Global Aquaculture Alliance names John Forster Chair of Salmon Technical Committee

Nominations sought for committee membership
February 11, 2009

Global Aquaculture Alliance names John Forster Chair of Salmon Technical Committee

The Global Aquaculture Alliance (GAA), the standards-setting organization for aquaculture seafood, today announced the appointment of internationally respected aquaculture pioneer John Forster, Ph.D., as chairman of its newly created salmon technical committee. GAA plans to have draft certification standards for salmon farms in place by September. 

Forster’s appointment was unanimously approved by GAA’s Standards Oversight Committee, a 12-member group that includes equal representation from academia, the NGO community and industry.

“The appointment of John Forster is a positive step for GAA,” GAA President George Chamberlain said. “We are fortunate that such a highly regarded scientist and leader in salmon aquaculture took on this important position. Forster has the unique leadership and communication skills needed to develop widely accepted salmon standards.”

Forster’s credentials in salmon farming position him well for the assignment, Chamberlain said. In addition to serving as president of Stolt Sea Farm Washington Inc., Forster has worked extensively in all facets of the salmon business in Canada, Chile, Scotland and the United States. He has served on the NOAA Marine Fisheries Advisory Committee and is a former U.S. representative to the International Salmon Farmers Association.

“I’m honored that GAA has trusted me with this important task,” Forster said. “Since farmed salmon has become a major seafood item globally, it is essential to assure consumers that the salmon farming industry operates to the highest standards regarding food safety, environmental sustainability, animal welfare and social justice. With the help of the members yet to be appointed to the technical committee, I will do all I can to develop standards that provide this important assurance to the marketplace.”

The Global Aquaculture Alliance currently seeks members to work with Forster on the BAP Salmon Farm Technical Committee. Over their three-year terms, members will review issues, vote on drafts and consider proposals for both new standards and revisions. Nominations may be sent to Forster at

The Global Aquaculture Alliance has developed certification standards for shrimp hatcheries and farms, tilapia farms, channel catfish farms and processing facilities. Known as Best Aquaculture Practices, these standards cover food safety, traceability, animal welfare, community and social welfare, and environmental sustainability.