As with almost all farmed animals, kampachi are subject to small external pests – in this case, the skin fluke that attaches itself to the fish’s skin. These flukes do not pose any risk to human health. They also do not detract from the quality of the harvested product. However, they may cause irritation to the fish. Proliferation of skin flukes in the net pen may also lead to increases in parasite prevalence in wild fish. It should be noted that in prior studies, the skin flukes on farmed kampachi in offshore net pens did not have any impact on wild fish populations.
This species of skin fluke is common on our fish in the spring and fall seasons, when the water temperature is between 23oC and 28oC, and is less prevalent in summer and winter, when temperatures are outside of these ranges. We monitor the abundance of skin flukes on our farm site, with an eye to both optimizing fish health and welfare in the pens, and reducing potential risks for transmission to wild fish.
We share the data on skin fluke prevalence publicly, because we are required to do so under the Aquaculture Stewardship Council certification standards (see Certifications page), and because we believe that a transparent approach is important both for our customers and our community.
The current prevalence of skin flukes on the farm site is __ per fish.