WASHINGTON, DC — February 22, 2005 — The Food Marketing Institute (FMI) and Salmon of the Americas (SOTA) today announced plans to develop a comprehensive certification program for farmed salmon. The program will be managed under the auspices of FMI's Safe Quality Food (SQF) Certification Program.

Salmon industry experts representing SOTA members in Chile, Canada and the United States are participating in the program.

“We believe this project will be the most comprehensive seafood certification program initiated to date. FMI retail and wholesale members will guide the development of the program, which will be audited by international third party certification experts," said Paul Ryan, Executive Director of the SQF Program at FMI.

The salmon project is based on a risk analysis of each stage in the salmon supply chain. Critical areas of production will be identified and monitored to ensure proper controls are maintained. The project will serve as the global model for best practices for the safe production of farm-raised salmon.

In addition to the food safety and quality aspects of salmon production and processing, the program will also include environmental and worker welfare issues.

“This program will ensure our retail members that the salmon they purchase from SQF certified suppliers has been produced and processed by SOTA members using responsible practices,” Ryan added.

“We are pleased to be working with FMI on this initiative and feel that the uniform standards of this program will allow retailers to confidently promote and sell SOTA salmon supplied by SOTA members under the SQF certification,” stated Alex Trent, SOTA Executive Director. “SQF certification will provide additional confidence for consumers that producers are using responsible salmon farming practices. The results will be good for producers, retailers, and consumers who will be able to reap the unique benefits of this extraordinary food.”