Latin America

Project to reduce antibiotic use in Chilean salmon farming

A public-private initiative aims to implement new solutions to prevent bacterial diseases and reduce the use of antibiotics.

Yelcho project
March 26, 2024

In 2023, 11 Chilean salmon-producing companies, together with the Salmon Council, Intesal of SalmonChile and with the support of Aquabench, proposed to the Agricultural and Livestock Service (SAG) and the Service National Fisheries and Aquaculture (Sernapesca) work together to implement new solutions to prevent bacterial diseases and reduce the use of antibiotics.

The initiative was presented at AquaSur 2024 as the Yelcho Project and it is based on six pillars:

  • Participate in a public-private partnership in the context of the World Organization for Animal Health (WHO) and the National Antimicrobial Resistance Plan (RAM) in the salmon production process.
  • Adhere to a significant reduction in the use of antibiotics.
  • Review regulatory requirements and new available immunological technologies.
  • Evaluate the use of boosters or immunity-prolonging products/strategies.
  • Facilitate access and development of technical information that allows for faster progress to obtain new vaccines and/or immunological products.
  • Promote continuous technical collaboration between authorities and the private sector.

The National Director of the Fisheries and Aquaculture Service, Soledad Tapia, pointed out that “the agreement that we have just signed is very important because it is a public-private alliance between salmon companies, but also between SAG and Sernapesca to accelerate the implementation of vaccines, and thus reduce the use of antibiotics. For us, this is very important, because what we seek is precisely to reduce the use of antibiotics as much as possible and look for other alternatives such as vaccines that promote animal health and well-being and, with it, the health of the environment, which is what we all want. We hope the communities that live near the farming centers will also wait."