Our relationship with nature not only defines our history, it shapes our future, too. Yet beneath the surface of Iceland’s fjords, an industrial fish farming method threatens to destroy one of Europe’s last remaining wildernesses. Open net salmon farms wreak havoc on the fragile environments they’re placed in, polluting pristine ecosystems while mistreating the farmed fish and driving local salmon populations to extinction. It’s an industry at odds with Iceland’s untouched landscape, and as a growing local movement has shown, nothing replaces nature. Laxaþjóð | A Salmon Nation tells the story of a country united by its lands and waters, and the power of a community to protect the wild places and animals that helped forge its identity.
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Europe’s salmon farm problem
Outside of Iceland, the farmed salmon industry is booming across Europe, in Norway, Scotland and Ireland in particular, driven by predominantly Norwegian business interests. Salmon consumption worldwide is three times higher than it was in 1980.As production grows, so does consumption.
Since 2019, when Patagonia’s global Artifishal campaign was launched, the company has raised the alarm on wild salmon’s slide toward extinction due to the threats posed by fish hatcheries and ocean-based fish farms. Five years later, with Laxaþjóð – A Salmon Nation, Patagonia calls on the Icelandic government to show leadership in Europe and ban new open net salmon farms and phase out existing ones.