The strict veterinarian aquaculture legislation in the Faroe Islands has been instrumental in ensuring the welfare of farmed Faroese salmon, as it protects the salmon from disease. Since implemented in 2003, the legislation has been so effective in protecting them that farmed salmon from the Faroe Islands are today completely free of antibiotics.
Strong, fresh currents in pristine waters with steady sea temperature:
To ensure the welfare of farmed salmon, it is imperative that fresh, clean water is continually flowing through the pens. The pristine, clear waters in the Faroese fjords and sounds, combined with the fast-moving currents from the North Atlantic Drift, which passes right by the Faroe Islands, creates an environment where salmon can thrive. With the help of these strong currents, farmed salmon from the Faroe Islands actually must swim long distances, as they would in the wild.
Because of the remote location of the Faroe Islands in the path of the North Atlantic Drift, the temperature of the sea around the Faroe Islands is relatively steady year-round.
Legislation ensuring fish welfare:
To further guarantee the quality of the water, it is required by law (§ 61, paragraph 2.) that water quality measurements have to be taken in the pens on a regular basis and analyzed for purity.
In order to make sure that salmon have ample room to swim and thereby helping to ensure fish welfare, the density of salmon in the pens is limited by law (§ 61, paragraph 3); however, all Faroese producers keep an even lower density in their pens in order to ensure maximum quality and fish welfare.
|Average fish weight
|| Maximum density allowed
||Average density 2009*
| < 1 kg
||10 kg/m3||2,5 kg/m3|
| 1-2 kg
||15 kg/m3||7,9 kg/m3|
| 2-3 kg
||20 kg/m3||9,6 kg/m3|
| > 3 kg
||25 kg/m3||15,4 kg/m3|
There are several indicators that demonstrate salmon from the Faroe Islands are thriving:
- No need to administer antibiotics to farmed salmon from the Faroe Islands.
- The growth factor is very high, while the feed factor is very good.
- The Faroe Islands has the industry’s highest smolt yield.
- The Faroese aquaculture industry has the industry's lowest mortality rate.