Category 1: Small and Medium-Sized Companies
Tapping into the discovery and applied research expertise of Canadian universities has proven to Yellow Island Aquaculture Ltd. (YIAL) many times over that farming organic native salmon is highly lucrative.
Based in Heriot Bay, British Columbia, YIAL has been involved in aquaculture research since its inception in 1985, but it needed the fundamental scientific expertise and infrastructure of universities to solve some of the problems they faced. More specifically, these entrepreneurs wanted to farm salmon without using antibiotics.
A 20-year university collaboration with university researchers resulted in improved rearing techniques and genetic brood (breeding) stock, enabling YIAL to become the first commercial salmon farm in Canada to convert to 100% organic production of a native species, the Chinook salmon. Led by Dr. Trevor Pitcher, an expert in fish reproduction and genetics at the University of Windsor, YIAL shares a 2013 NSERC Synergy Award with seven Canadian researchers.