Here we go again - "Blame Canada!"

I was all set to write a brief little ditty about those sexy new PETA postage stamps ("Pamela Anderson AND Bob Barker? Consider my Holidaze shopping done, baby). Then I unfolded my clutch of daily dead tree to see a serious looking banner headline. "Canada Kept Salmon Threat Secret" For those just now checking in, I got hooked by that story breakthrough last month while looking at other viruses attacking specific agribusinesses with similarly devastating effects. The prospect of this salmon-targeting disease (named Infectious Salmon Anemia or "ISA") packed the added punch of possibly making the leap from farmed salmon populations to the much more valuable and previously safe-seeming wild salmon populations. Today's headline alludes to the fact that Canadian researchers have actually known about ISA being in wild salmon for a decade. One pesky research fellow found it present in tested fish back in 2002. The good news is that it may be a harmless natural variation of ISA that's always been out there. Where the story gets sexy is when the push to publish the findings maybe encountered the faint possibility that Canada's regulatory bureaucracy kept it hidden. This small tempest must nonetheless be swirling around the fishing taverns and coffeeshops today. Yarrr! For me, the takeaway jibes with my experience that emerging viral threats to an agribusiness leave those farmers feeling almost totally powerless. The teachable moment being that if researchers and bureaucrats dink around with that research because of some unseen benefit for keeping things silent...well, that's just a disservice to everyone.