Fisheries and Oceans Canada

Fisheries and Oceans Canada

August 23, 2010 15:00 ET

Government of Canada Supports Six Innovative B.C. Aquaculture Projects

CAMPBELL RIVER, BRITISH COLUMBIA--(Marketwire - Aug. 23, 2010) - The Honourable Gail Shea, Minister of Fisheries and Oceans (DFO) announced today $637,678 in funding to support innovation and sustainability in the aquaculture industry in British Columbia.

"This investment supports the British Columbia aquaculture industry in developing projects that are more innovative, sustainable and competitive in the international aquaculture playing field," said Minister Shea. "I am pleased by the range of projects in this province that are receiving funding under DFO's Aquaculture Innovation and Market Access Program (AIMAP). It demonstrates the scope and potential of the industry, its focus on environmental stewardship, and the economic benefits it offers to coastal communities."

In British Columbia, a total of six aquaculture projects, four finfish and two shellfish, will receive federal support through AIMAP. These projects seek to expand the knowledge and technologies currently being used in the British Columbia aquaculture industry.

"Our government supports the development of a vibrant and sustainable Canadian aquaculture industry that contributes to the economies of rural, coastal and First Nations communities. Campbell River is just one community in B.C. that sees the benefits of this industry firsthand," said the Honourable John Duncan, Minister of Indian and Northern Affairs and Member of Parliament for Campbell River.

Through AIMAP, the Government of Canada supports the aquaculture industry by helping it develop and adopt management techniques and technologies that enhance the industry's economic and environmental performance. The results of these projects, as with all AIMAP projects, will be shared with the Canadian aquaculture industry as a whole to assist in furthering Canada's position as an international leader in producing sustainable seafood.

AIMAP funding helps recipients plan, manage and complete aquaculture projects to enhance the productivity, economic viability, environmental performance and potential of the Canadian aquaculture industry, as well as to produce a healthy and nutritious food source. This federal support also leverages investments from a variety of public and private sector sources, promoting collaborative efforts in Canada's aquaculture industry and minimizing the duplication of effort.

For more information on DFO's aquaculture program, the AIMAP application process, a summary of projects funded, frequently asked questions on AIMAP, as well as contact information, visit this website:


B.C. Aquaculture Projects Receive Federal Funding



On August 23, the Honourable Gail Shea, Minister of Fisheries and Oceans announced $637, 678 in funding for aquaculture activities in British Columbia through the Department of Fisheries and Oceans Aquaculture Innovation and Market Access Program (AIMAP).

AIMAP helps Canada's aquaculture industry enhance its sustainable performance by refining management techniques and technologies. The program's overall goal is to support Canadian aquaculture and encourage innovation investments in this industry. AIMAP aims to enhance the global competitiveness and environmental performance of the Canadian aquaculture industry.

The following projects were awarded funding:


Sablefish Farming and Hatchery Improvements

Sablefish Canada Inc., operating on Salt Spring Island, has received $200,000 AIMAP funding to increase environmental performance and energy efficiency in sablefish aquaculture. The company is developing automated subsurface feeding technology to increase the operational efficiency of subsurface feeding equipment for farmed sablefish. The project will develop, install and test the new technology. This project has leveraged nearly $1.75 million in additional funds.

White Sturgeon Farming Diversification

Target Marine Hatcheries Ltd. in Sechelt, B.C., has received $162,000 in AIMAP funding to advance Canada's sturgeon freshwater aquaculture industry. The project includes work to improve maturation techniques, transfer and/or develop technology for non-invasive sexing and staging, develop finishing diets and environments to optimize flesh and caviar quality, and develop cultivating techniques to minimize viral disease impacts. This project has leveraged $426,500 in additional funds.

Closed Containment Salmon Aquaculture Demonstration Project

Mama'omas Enterprises Inc., a privately held company of the 'Namgis First Nation, has received nearly $49,800 in AIMAP funding to pilot an aquaculture facility designed to demonstrate the technical feasibility of producing full-sized salmon in a closed containment, land-based, water re-circulating aquaculture facility. The project, which will be carried out near the northeastern tip of Vancouver Island, will also try to define the necessary operating parameters for a much larger, commercial-scale facility. It has leveraged $230,200 in additional funds.

Sea Lice Vaccines for Salmonid Aquaculture

Operating out of Saanichton, B.C., Microtek International Inc. has received more than $36,438 in AIMAP funding to validate and test an injectible sea lice vaccine for the prevention of the parasites in salmonid aquaculture. Microtek leveraged about $42,500 in additional funding for this project.


Increasing Confidence of Food Safety in Cultured Shellfish

Odyssey Shellfish Ltd., in Bowser, BC, has received $100,000 in AIMAP funding for a commercial-scale deepwater holding and pre-harvest finishing system for oysters. The goal of this project is to create a new health management tool to ensure quality and food safety aspects of cultured shellfish. More than $313,000 has been leveraged for this project.

Renewable Energy at Shellfish Nurseries

Evening Cove Oysters, from Fanny Bay, B.C., has received more than $89,440 in AIMAP funding to improve the efficiency and sustainability of shellfish aquaculture nurseries. This project will involve partnering with the Centre for Shellfish Research at Vancouver Island University to acquire and test solar power as a low cost technology solution to seed production. In addition to the AIMAP funds, this project has leveraged close to $72,000 in additional funding.

For more information about AIMAP, visit:

Contact Information

  • Fisheries and Oceans Canada
    Michelle Imbeau
    Communications Advisor, Pacific Region
    Fisheries and Oceans Canada
    Nancy Bishay
    Director of Communications, Office of the Minister