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CANADA’S Minister of Fisheries and Oceans has announced an investment of more than $1 million for the Canadian Aquaculture Industry Alliance (CAIA) to generate awareness and new sales of Canada's high quality aquaculture products.

Speaking at the 2011 National Forum of the CAIA Fisheries Minister Keith Ashfield on behalf of Agriculture Minister Gerry Ritz said: “From salmon and trout to oysters and mussels, Canada's aquaculture is second to none and plays a key role in keeping our economy strong. With fish and seafood harvested from some of the cleanest, most pristine waters in the world, Canada has a longstanding international reputation for providing top quality seafood and boasts one of the most valuable commercial fisheries in the world."

This investment will enable CAIA to participate in trade shows and missions, brand Canadian farmed salmon, market Canadian farmed mussel and sablefish, and undertake international market development and market research for Canadian aquaculture products. In 2010, Canada exported $4 billion of fish and seafood to more than 130 countries, with aquaculture exports totalling almost $600 million.

"Today's announcement is good news for the Canadian aquaculture industry," said Ruth Salmon, CAIA's Executive Director. "With this funding, our industry members can continue to deliver the powerful message to our major export markets that Canada is a world leader in the environmentally sustainable production of high quality farmed seafood products."

CAIA is a national industry association that represents the interests of Canadian aquaculture operators, feed companies and suppliers, as well as provincial finfish and shellfish aquaculture associations. The aquaculture industry is truly nationwide, with established operations in every Canadian province, plus the Yukon.

Today's announcement is part of an $88 million investment provided through the AgriMarketing programme under Growing Forward, which helps industry implement long-term international strategies including activities such as international market development, industry-to-industry trade advocacy, and consumer awareness and branding.

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