BC Salmon Farmers PR campaign: continuing the discussion…

I left some more comments today on the bcsalmonfacts.ca website — the Public Relations (PR) spin campaign of the BC Salmon Farmers Association and related companies involved in open-pen salmon farming on the BC coast. I have found it quite an interesting process — from a variety of angles…

As a few of my posts have alluded to this week, looking at the strategy, tactics and approach of this PR campaign has been an interesting process. Launching PR campaigns can be akin to freeing — or trying to cage — a schizophrenic, unpredictable critter.

These sorts of things can be a great success, or an absolute bomb… just like a Hollywood movie.

Backlash can hurt just as much as watching the old movie Backdraft multiple times.

And, thus, these sorts of things must be well-though out and very well managed — even more so when the purpose is “getting the real story out” and espousing “facts”. Think of how many politicians have had campaigns ended or careers ended because they weren’t forthright about certain actions, activities,  from the past.

No matter how many clever commercials they put on TV or social media.

A glaring difference here is that a politician has clear objectives with their PR-campaigns… get elected. When it comes to this ‘salmonfacts’ campaign… well, I’m a little unsure. Some of this relates to, for example, why cannibalize your own businesses.

One of the comments left today on the bcsalmonfacts.ca website in regards to the “fact” that “salmon are incredibly efficient eaters”. Yes, this is a fact, but what isn’t an “efficient eater”…?

And why cannibalize your own business in this process:

some might suggest that this ‘fact’ could be referred to as cannibalism…

And no, I don’t mean in the standard food consumption meaning of the word; more the business meaning of the word.

“Cannibalization refers to the business process whereby engaging in one activity or practice necessarily eats into another activity or practice. Cannibalization can take place within a firm, between businesses, or across industries.”

Last time I checked (and maybe it has changed recently?) Marine Harvest and Marine Harvest Canada [I stand corrected, it’s Skretting not Marine Harvest as Nutreco sold Marine Harvest a few years back] are subsidiaries of Nutreco:

Their website suggests: “Nutreco is a global leader in animal nutrition and fish feed.”

one of their specialties is “Compound Feeds”:

“Compound feeds are complete, industrially blended or compounded feeds which fully match the nutritional requirements of the specified animal (poultry, pigs, ruminants, fish, rabbits, goats, sheep and other species).”

So it seems like this graphic and this concentration on salmon feed conversion rates is a little contradictory when compared to overall business practices of companies listed on this site.

Yes, maybe salmon food conversion rates are lower and this can serve as a front to suggest: look how “sustainable” this business of salmon farming is…

But isn’t it a little hypocritical for a company to sell its “sustainability” practices, by focusing on this specific ad, when the parent company (Nutreco) of this company [Skretting] is actually heavily involved as a majority of its business in developing feed for the poultry, cattle and pig industry, and is in fact invested heavily in poultry and other meats:

“Nutreco’s subsidiary Sada is the Spanish market leader in chicken production and is well known in Spain for its Sada and Cuk brands. Sada also produces a range of chicken products and meal solutions.”

If not hypocritical, its certainly cannibalizing the parent companies businesses.

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