In recent years, amoebic gill disease (AGD) has become a serious issue for marine salmon sites. Researchers are now developing a new method of treatment that will be milder on both the fish and the environment compared to existing methods.
Presently, farmed salmon affected by AGD are treated with fresh water or are bathed in hydrogen peroxide. Researchers are now investigating whether peracetic acid can be a more sustainable alternative to these treatments.
Treatment must be safe
The goal of the initial trials is mainly to investigate whether peracetic acid is safe to use in the treatment of salmon.
Researchers from the Norwegian research institute Nofima, the Norwegian Veterinary Institute and the Technical University of Denmark have tested various doses of peracetic acid on salmon and separately on the amoeba in three trials.
Their preliminary conclusion is that peracetic acid is not harmful to the salmon, that it has an effect on the amoeba that causes the disease and that there is low environmental risk when using peracetic acid.
“It is also very positive that we now have good interdisciplinary evidence regarding how salmon react to peracetic acid, and we have conducted preliminary investigations concerning environmental impact,” says project lead Carlo C Lazado, a fish health researcher at Nofima.