Mowi shuts down Klemtu plant over COVID-19 concerns

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“We know these measures are challenging and disruptive.”

To support the First Nation communities of Kitasoo / Xai’xais and their decision to isolate the community in Klemtu, BC, Canada, during the coronavirus, Mowi Canada West writes that it has halted production at its plant there.

In its April newsletter, Mowi Canada West added that alongside the halt in production, all site staff are flying indirectly, in respect of the travel ban in place.

The community declared a state of emergency last week over the pandemic.

In the mid-1990s, Mowi (then Marine Harvest) approached the community to consider partnering with the Kitasoo/Xai’xais-owned salmon aquaculture businesses: Kitasoo Aquafarms and Kitasoo Seafoods. In 1998 an agreement was reached, and in October 2000 the first salmon were processed at Kitasoo Seafoods fish plant.

In 2019, Mowi Canada West entered into a new 10-year agreement with the Kitasoo/Xai’Xais First Nation for economic development and employment centred around salmon farming and processing in Klemtu, British Columbia.

In normal times, the site processes around 1000 fish each hour.

Mowi Canada West’s HR Director Dean Dobrinsky is coordinating the company’s pandemic response and wrote: “We know these measures are challenging and disruptive. They are, however, necessary. We are grateful for everyone’s efforts, and look forward to shaking all your hands and properly expressing our gratitude when we have come through the other side of this pandemic.”