Fish vaccine. (Photo: FAO)
Court orders Sernapesca to provide information on salmon antibiotics use
Friday, September 11, 2015, 23:50 (GMT + 9)
The Court of Appeals of Santiago upheld a complaint filed by the conservation organization Oceana and ordered the National Fisheries and Aquaculture Service (SERNAPESCA) to provide information on the use, amounts and types of antibiotics employed by Chilean salmon companies between 2009 and 2013.
In a unanimous decision, the appellate court upheld the appeal filed by the NGO against the decision of the Council for Transparency (CPLT), which refused to hand over the data.
The CPLT had justified its decision by arguing that SERNAPESCA is not required to provide disaggregated information per company because it would affect their competitiveness in the market.
The new sentence states that there is no reason to maintain the disaggregated information requested in reserve, given that there are consolidated records of its existence.
"The reasons given by the claimed party to refuse the requested information are not consistent with what establish the applicable regulations. In fact, there is an exception to access to information and delivering separate background regarding medications applied to salmon farming is not seen as affecting the companies, if it is delivered globally or per groups to SERNAPESCA," argues the ruling.
And it adds that in view of this, "it is not seen how there can be an impact on their economic and financial activities, expenses and production procedures, farming methods, market prices, which affects the commercial and productive area of this industry" .
Oceana resorted to CPLT in July last year, after 50 salmon firms refused to disclose the amount and type of antibiotics used, arguing that it would mean a "competitive and commercial risk".
A report issued by SERNAPESCA revealed that the Chilean salmon firms jointly used 450.7 tonnes of antibiotics in 2013, while in Norway, the largest farmed salmon producer in the world, used only one ton.
- Access denied to data on antibiotics used in salmon industry
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- Oceana reports lack of transparency on salmon antibiotics