May 27, 2021

Northwest Aquaculture Alliance appoints Blue Ocean CEO to board of directors


The Northwest Aquaculture Alliance (NWAA) — which represents aquaculture producers and support-related businesses in the Pacific region — announced on May 25 the appointment of seafood industry leader and Blue Ocean Mariculture chief executive officer Dick Jones to its 11-member board of directors.


Hawaii, US-based Blue Ocean Mariculture is currently the only open-ocean finfish aquaculture producer operating within the United States. It is also the country's only fish farm to be certified by the Aquaculture Stewardship Council (ASC) as environmentally and socially responsible.


Jim Parsons, Northwest Aquaculture Alliance's board president, described the addition of Jones as "a strategic and necessary step in expanding our geographic reach as an aquaculture advocacy organisation as we collectively call for a more aquaculture-friendly regulatory environment both nationally and regionally – including the Northwest region and the Pacific Islands."


Jones cited the emerging need for food self-sufficiency and food security in the US as a key reason for joining the alliance, which he views as a strong voice for all aquaculture – whether marine, freshwater or closed containment systems that produce finfish, shellfish or sea vegetables.


"One of the lessons learned during the pandemic is that you can't always count on imports to feed people," he said. "We have the knowledge, the technology and the people in this country to be self-sufficient when it comes to the production of aquatic foods. Creating a favourable climate for responsible, sustainable aquaculture is perhaps the most important initiative we can undertake in this country."


Jones brings to the alliance his expertise in the non-profit sector, where he worked with industry, governments and agencies globally to implement fisheries and aquaculture improvement projects.


Jones said he looks forward to helping NWAA in its aquaculture advocacy role.


"We need aquaculture to feed the world into the future," he said, adding that the alliance "plays an important role in promoting the many benefits of responsible aquaculture while providing a platform for networking opportunities in the aquaculture sector."


- The Fish Site