Farmed fish feed high on food chain

Re: "Aquaculture is the big fish that got away," opinion, Nov 25.

The writer correctly states that "global demand for seafood is increasing." But so is the demand for automobiles.

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Many advocates suggest that fish farms are the solution to feeding millions of starving people. Really? When the cost of farmed fish rivals the cost of beef?

There is one simple reason why aquaculture provides a minuscule percentage of the world's food supply: It just costs too much. The reason is basic: Seafood feeds too high up in the food chain. Big fish eat little fish, shellfish filter out zooplankton.

By comparison, cattle feed on grass, at the bottom of the food chain. One step.

Until aquaculture starts growing its own grass, it will never be able to compete with land-based systems. Furthermore, until aquaculture can supply its own grass, it will never be sustainable. This is not something you can blame on Ottawa or NIMBYs.

Lloyd Erickson

Nanaimo

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