By Contributed – Campbell River Mirror
Published: June 06, 2012 11:00 AM
Campbell River’s reputation as a major hub for marine finfish and shellfish aquaculture industries received a significant boost Saturday, thanks to federal funding announced by John Duncan, Minister of Aboriginal Affairs and Northern Development, and Member of Parliament for Vancouver Island North.
“This funding demonstrates our Government’s commitment to supporting research that has real-life economic applications for key local industries like aquaculture,” said Minister Duncan during community celebrations for Ocean’s Day at the Maritime Heritage Centre. “With this investment we are creating jobs and new economic opportunities here in Campbell River.”
Western Diversification funding of $497,000 will allow the BC Centre for Aquatic Health Sciences Society (BC CAHS) to attain International Organization for Standardization (ISO) and International Electro-technical Commission (IEC) 17025:2005 accreditation. Duncan made the announcement on behalf of Lynne Yelich, Minister of State for Western Economic Diversification.
ISO/IEC is an international standard that sets laboratory requirements for testing and calibration. New accreditation and expanded diagnostic services will enable BC CAHS to become a nationally recognized independent laboratory. With the right credentials to screen aquatic animals and seafood products, BC CAHS will help local companies keep up with increasing world demand by meeting international export standards.
“CAHS is pleased to be receiving funding for ISO certification today,” said Dr. Sonja Saksida, Executive Director, Centre for Aquatic Health Sciences. “This project will ultimately help the centre’s goal in improving the health and welfare of aquatic animals and the sustainability of our ecosystems.”
This ISO certification has been a long time in coming for the BC CAHS, Dr. Saksida said.
“We’ve been working on this proposal for several years,” she said.
The BC Centre for Aquatic Health Sciences is a not-for-profit society located in Campbell River and is the only aquatic research facility of its kind in the province.