BRITISH COLUMBIA — The Canadian Food Inspection Agency (CFIA) and Fisheries and Oceans Canada are investigating reports of Infectious Salmon Anaemia (ISA) discovered in sockeye salmon in British Columbia.
Last week, Rick Routledge, a professor at Simon Fraser University in Burnaby, B.C., announced the detection in two wild sockeye smolts from the central coast of B.C., and the virus was identified as the same European strain that wiped out about 70 per cent of farmed salmon stocks in Chile.
Biologist Alexandra Morton told the CBC that the virus could have a potential devastating impact on the province’s wild salmon and herring.
“We want to assure Canadians and people around the world that the CFIA and Fisheries and Oceans Canada are working diligently to get the facts about the reports of the presence of Infectious Salmon Anaemia (ISA) in British Columbian salmon,” responded Gerry Ritz, minister of Agriculture and Agrifoods in a recent statement, as the reports have not been completely verified by federal officials.
Tissue samples are being analyzed in a laboratory in Moncton, N.B., and results are expected in four to five weeks, according to Ritz.