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Fish Farmer VOLUME 42

Serving worldwide aquaculture since 1977






Aqua Nor gears up for greatest show yet

Scott Binnie reports from Southampton

Capital hosts Native Oyster Restoration Alliance

Tributes to Tavish for 20 years of support

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JULY 2019

02/07/2019 11:13:29




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Contents 4-17 4-15 4-14 News

What’s What’s happening happening in in aquaculture aquaculture in the the UK UK and and around around the the world world in

18-21 16-21 16-17 16-22 extra Industry pioneer News Extra platform Parliamentary inquiry


Fair hearing French connection Farmers must Uphold the codefight back Strong voices


Steve Bracken SSC’s record results Stewart Graham Sea filice legislation The nal sessions

salmon farming sector in Scotland, when it was to he focus this month is on Europe, the internati T HE is coincidence that andwhere videos of unhealthy Sno Fish Farmer went topictures press, there was sti ll-told no offi cial HE biggest date in the aquaculture diary at least inonal be the subject of a parliamentary inquiry, embraced the industry will soon gathering for the EASalready (European salmon were tobe news outlets just asjoint the Scotti sh salmon news from the Scotti sh parliamentary inquiry into Europe - issent looming, and anyone who hasn’t opportunity this would provide to explain how it month. operated. Aquaculture Society) and WAS (World Aquaculture Society) parliament back to work atwell the start of this These farming, conducted earlier this year by the Rural Economy booked,went accommodation as as stand space, for Aqua The had to hide and, if given fair hearing, to benothing conference, staged over days in theaof southern French images had litt le to do with thefive current state Scotland’s ficould sh and Connecti vity (REC) committ ee. MSPs have now held five Nor industry is likely to be disappointed. Demand has reached record address much of the criti cism levelled against it. city ofngs, As well asare highlighti ng the latest farms -Montpellier. where sea lice in decline and, inwe fact, at abe fivemeeti in for private, tolevels consider their report and must proportions this summer’s show, which marks 40technological years Fish Farmer supported this at times felt that salmon advances in our fast moving sector, Aqua 2018 will alsohas feature year low (htt p://scotti pati ent. waiti ng forview, their recommendati ons been since theHowever, event was launched. Erikbut Hempel, the Nor-Fishing farmers were being drowned out by the noisier elements of the sessions on emerging markets and look at the role of fi sh This latest propaganda campaign, which involves all the usual made harder by leaks from within the REC to anti -salmon farming Foundation’s communications boss, said even a rebuilt exhibition angling lobby, which had called for the investi gati on. But as the farming in alleviati ng poverty. Increasingly, industry meeti ngs anti -aquaculture suspects, came as Holyrood’s Rural Economy acti vists. The latest of these (see our news story on page 4) hall has not been enough to house all those wanting a platform sessions progressed, and eventually farmers’ voices were heard, are broadening their scope, subjects such asthat the social and Connecti vity committ eetackling returned the summer recess to makes grim reading for the industry asfrom it was suggests ee for their products and services. Scotland unable tocommitt bag a we became more opti misti c. We now believe that MSPs, perhaps with acceptability of aquaculture and the contributi on it makes to global consider its draft report into the future of salmon farming. members have been willing to listen to those campaigning to slot for a national pavilion, a blow for many Scottish businesses food security and saving the planet, aindustry move is toanti welcomed. the excepti on ofvaluable one Greens cahoots with -farming Those who want toor shut thein asbe expected, shut down this sector, rather thanthat tohave, those who operate lacking the resources totwo godown it alone. Also investi gati ng initi ati ves in the developing world, Dr Harrison campaigners, will, on balance, regard the industry in a favourable stepped their(the activiti es, which now involve breaching the has within it.up SAIC However, Scottish Aquaculture Innovation Centre) light. They will see that farmers take their environmental Charo Karisa ofhopefully WorldFish writes thesnatch farming al inthe biosecure environments of farm sites to photographs in Of course, such stories may beabout inaccurate and, inpotenti any case, saved the day, and will spearhead a Team Scotland presence that Nigeria, both in catf ish and ti lapia culti vati on. responsibiliti es seriously and that businesses will only ever invest the hopelike of itfifinding incriminati ngthe evidence against farmers. Oneincommitt ee’s ndings are not binding. Scotland’s farmers sounds will encompass all elements of fiash national stand In Scotland, the summer has been something of a waiti ngdead game growth that isfibeen sustainable. campaigner lmed himself searching, unsuccessfully, for have always fortunate to have the support of their minister, including a visit from Rural Economy Minister while the parliament isindustry in recesschampion, and the members of Holyrood’s If ee members, those yet to of fi shthe at acommitt Marine Harvest site.especially Another said hewho sawhave ‘hundreds’ Fergus Ewing, to grow sustainably. Fergus Ewing. Rural Economy and Connecti vity committ ee conti nue to weigh up visit a salmon farm, would like to learn more about the subject of infested salmon in a pen, but we only have his word against that But it should not go unchallenged that some MSPs on REC Another industry champ, Liberal Democrat MSPWe fordon’t thetheexpect the evidence in their inquiry into salmon farming. their inquiry, we have plenty of good stories in our May issue. Even of the professional vets and biologists who manage the welfare of committ ee, with their own agendas against the growth of the Shetlands Scott, has announced hisMSPs retirement from their reportTavish until the autumn but hope the are using thethe time the bett er, they could head to Highlands later this month, where these farms on a daily basis. industry, are in breach of the Code of Conduct for MSPs. As they political arena, Fish Farmer would like to join many friends to become fully and acquainted with the facts about fishhis farming. they meetin the aquaculture industry en masse Scotland’s Ifthe the industry isto proud ofreti itsthe high standards, as itsalmon says is, it are inwill asector positi on inflthe uence course ofat farming, inThis acknowledging hisfuture unstinting support foritlongest Scottish month also sees rement of Marine Harvest’s biggest fish farming show. must mount a much more robust defence of itself, through its and of businesses vital to Scotland’s economy, we have a right aquaculture. The industry needs strong voices to fight its corner serving employee, Steve Bracken. We had no trouble collecting We will certainly at Aquaculture UK inindustry, Aviemore and representati ve body, the SSPO, than itthe has done tothrough date. The to know who they are, and weand hope its and Tavish’s will bebe much missed. warm tributes from his friends colleagues to mark thelook forward to seeing many of you there too. campaigners, we nowpressure see,the willrest stop at representati ves, will the parliament toand investi gateatbefore milestone and, along with of thenothing, industry, thefarmers team Fish should prepared to fivery ght back. the RECbe report published. Farmer wish himisall the best for the future.

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Editorial Advisory Advisory Board: Board: Steve Editorial Bracken, Scott Landsburgh, Hervé Steve Bracken, Scott HervéLandsburgh, Migaud, Jim Treasurer, Chris Mitchell, Migaud, PatrickJim Smith and Jim Hervé Migaud, Patrick Smith, Patrick Smith, Treasurer and Jason Cleaversmith and Hamish Treasurer, Wiliam Jim Treasurer and Dowds William Dowds William Dowds Macdonell Editor: Jenny Hjul Designer: Andrew Designer: Andrew Balahura Editor: Jenny Hjul Balahura Adverti sing Manager: Team Designer: AndrewLeader: Balahura Dave Edler Executives: Advertising Scott Binnie Adverti sing Adverti sing Executi Executive: ve: Scott Binnie Maree Douglas sbinnie@fi Publisher: Alister Bennett Publisher: Alister Bennett

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Cover:Steve Alisonsh Hutchins, Dawnfresh Cover: Bracken explains Lumpsucker Scotti Sea Farms regional farming director, on Loch Etive. Cover: Norway’s salmon farming toCrown Prince Charles producti on manager for Prince Orkney, Picture: Binnie Haakon atScott Aqua 2017 during his visit toNor Marine Richard Darbyshire (left ), Harvest and the in 2016. Photo: Iainat Ferguson Westerbister team Scapa Pier

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22-24 22-23 18-19 24-27 News extra Salmon market SSPO Stirling prawn farm

Current trends In good Julie Hesketh-Laird Meet thehealth new chief executive

Contents – Editor’s Welcome

46-47 48-49 41-43 42-44 38-39 Brussels Nor Preview Aqua 2018 Aquaculture Innovation Salmon market Montpellier preview From shrimp torobust salmon Investor advice Innovation prize

44-46 46-49 40-41 50-55 Brussels Aqua 2018 Innovation Aquaculture New processors’ groupon Sti rling course Pictures atmarket the exhibiti Insurance

48-50 Aqua Nor Preview Team Scotland

56 48-49 50-58 42-45 52-55 Book Training Aqua 2018 Aquaculture Innovation Aqua review Nor Preview Martyn Haines Conference round-up Best the start-ups Focus cleaner fish Showofon highlights

56 57 53-55 60-63 48-49 Nor Preview Aquaculture UK Nor Fishing Aqua 2018 Net cleaning

24 20 20-21 28-29 26-27 Comment BTA Shellfi sh Comment What’s in a name? Dr Nick Lake Phil Thomas

Introducti onons Great Danes Farming angle Focus on Africa Robot soluti

What’s in a name? Dr Nick Lake Phil Thomas Martin Jaffa

60-63 58-59 60-63 68-69 51 Seawork Aquaculture Australia Training Sea bass BoatUKShow

28-31 26 22-23 30 Shellfish Shellfi sh Comment BTA

Scott Mitchell Binnie reports Barramundi boom Martyn Haines European leaders Chris

Montpellier report Dr Marti n Jaff a Doug McLeod Janet H Brown

28-31 24-25 32-33 SSPO Comment Scottish Shellfi sh Sea Farms Hamish Macdonell Rising stars Marti nBrown Jaff a Orkney anniversary Janet

32-33 26-27 26-30 34-35 34-36 News extra Shellfi shfiSea Cleaner sh Farms Scottish Comment Restocking Janet Machrihanish Orkney farm visit Marti nBrown Jaff arules

13 13

38-41 34-35 28-29 32-33 36-41 Aquaculture Comment Cleaner Orkney Farm visitfish seminar Global outlook Marti nofJaff a era Vaccines New player Dawn new

36-39 32-35 34-35 43-45 IoA careers Wild salmon Cleaner fish decline Orkney

69 64-67 70-73 52-54 65-67 Aquaculture Nigeria Networking Research Processing &UKRetail Meet the team on Boosti ng producti Dave Chris Conley Mitchell News Scottish Sea Farms award 81-82 76-77 56-59 68-69 From the Archive Value chains Aquaculture UK Awards David Litt le reports Growth in China Developing trends Aqua Source Directory

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91 78-79 63 70 & Marketing News Retail Processing & Retail Opinion Save Pinneys jobs Carlisle jobs Recruitment Eat more fishchallenges

Figure 9. 9. Development Development of of salmon salmon nominal nominal catch catch in in southern southern and and northern northern NEAC NEAC 1971 1971 to to 2016. 2016. Figure Text at at top top inserted inserted by by author. author. Filled Filled symbols symbols and and darker darker line line southern southern NEAC. NEAC. Text

The mackerel hypothesis Transport Leask Marine Sti rling students

By Nick Joy

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Figure 10. 10. Examples Examples of of the the young young mackerel mackerel currently currently growing growing up up ‘all ‘all over’ over’ the the North North Sea, Sea, Figure Norwegian Sea Sea and and along along the the Norwegian Norwegian coast coast at at the the moment. moment. These These were were caught caught in in aa ‘washing ‘washing Norwegian set’ by by the the purse purse seiner seiner ‘Brennholm’ ‘Brennholm’ at at an an arbitrary arbitrary position position 100 100 nm nm west west of of the the Lofoten Lofoten Isles Isles in in set’ January 2018. At this stage these small mackerels are competitors to the postsmolt salmon, January 2018. At this stage these small mackerels are competitors to the postsmolt salmon, later they they will will be be both both competitors competitors and and potential potential predators. predators. The The new new and and abundant abundant availability availability later Printed in Great Britain for the proprietors Wyvex Media Ltd by J Thomson Colour Printers Ltd, Printed in Great Britain for the proprietors Wyvex Media Ltd by J Thomson Colour Printers Ltd, Printed Printed in in Great Great Britain Britain for for the the proprietors proprietors Wyvex Wyvex Media Media Ltd Ltd by by JJ Thomson Thomson Colour Colour Printers Printers Ltd, Ltd,of juvenile mackerel in the multi sea winter salmon feeding areas may be a good explanation to of juvenile mackerel in the multi sea winter salmon feeding areas may be a good explanation to Glasgow ISSN 0262-9615 Glasgow ISSN ISSN 0262-9615 0262-9615 why the the MSW MSW fishes fishes have have such such aa good good condition condition at at present present despite despite their their poor poor early early sea sea growth. growth. Glasgow Glasgow ISSN 0262-9615 why Photo JC JC Holst. Holst. Photo

Introduction Introducti on Novel technology Temperature Introducti on

Welcome May.indd Aug.indd Welcome ---- May.indd Sept.indd Oct.indd July.indd 3333 Welcome Aug.indd Welcome Sept.indd Oct.indd

By Nick Joy


09/05/2018 18:05:09 08/08/2018 15:36:28 06/09/2018 16:32:15 04/10/2018 09:15:28 02/07/2019 18:05:09 11:19:39 09/05/2018 08/08/2018 15:36:28 06/09/2018 16:32:15 04/10/2018 09:15:28

United Kingdom News


New anchors a ‘breakthrough’ for farm growth

Above: Consortium members (left to right): Adam Caton (SME), Jamie Young (Gael Force), Andy Hunt (SME), Benjamin Cerfontaine and Jonathan Knappett (both University of Dundee)

INNOVATIVE anchoring technology could help the aquaculture industry site farms in new and bigger locations and support future growth in the sector. The new technology is being developed in Scotland by a consortium of engineering experts, who say it could also enhance farms’ environmental impact. Sustainable Marine Energy, the tidal energy technology specialist; the University of Dundee; marine equipment supplier, Gael Force Group; and the Scottish Aquaculture Innovation Centre (SAIC) are exploring the development of a ‘groutless’ anchoring approach, derived from techniques currently used in highly energetic marine sites. While concrete or steel anchors are suitable for existing farms, the technology will enable a move to higher energy locations, as well as those further from the shore, with solid rock on the seabed. Focused on reducing the cost, weight, and environmental impact of anchoring, the new approach will use much lighter anchors. These form a mechanical ground lock without the need for resin or grout. The


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reduction in weight allows operators to use more modestly sized, readily available vessels for deployment. Using a remotely operated drilling rig positioned from a workboat also affords greater precision with installation in deep water, high energy sites. The use of low noise rotational drilling would minimise disturbance to the marine ecosystem and damage to the seabed, while the anchors would be fully removable and potentially re-usable, said the consortium last month. Andy Hunt, chief engineer for Anchoring and Connectivity at Sustainable Marine Energy, said: ‘For some time we have seen applications in other sectors that would benefit from adaptations to our rock anchoring technology. ‘For us, this project brings together a very strong Scottish team of project partners with the appropriate skill set and experience to develop the right rock anchoring solution for the aquaculture market. ‘Together, we can quickly begin to unlock the sector’s latent potential, by opening up areas hitherto unsuitable for aquaculture farms.’

Michael Brown, reader at the University of Dundee’s Geotechnical Engineering Research Group, added: ‘This type of anchor technology allows deployment in more energetic environments and in deeper water, with increased confidence with respect to performance on solid rock. ‘The challenge from an engineering perspective is to develop an anchor that is efficient, easy to design and works in variety of rock types and rock mass conditions. ‘While it is easy to design a heavy and expensive rock anchor that works well in all scenarios, we need to refine the anchoring system specifically for aquaculture application. ‘To achieve this, we will use both scale model testing and calibrated numerical simulation of the rock anchor systems under realistic operational conditions. ‘This is a specialist area of expertise at the University of Dundee, currently being used to develop foundation and anchoring systems for tidal stream generators and future floating wind farms.’ Adoption of the technology would allow fish and shellfish farms to look at areas which are currently unsuitable for use. Locating operations in deeper, higher energy waters could potentially help to reduce gill health issues among fish, the spreading of sea lice, and disease risk. It could also lead to an increase in the industry’s capacity, by allowing the development of larger farms. Polly Douglas, aquaculture innovation manager at SAIC, said: ‘This technology could prove a real breakthrough for aquaculture in Scotland, enhancing sustainability in the industry and unlocking some of its latent potential. ‘If successful, the new anchoring technique would support the industry in meeting many of the Scottish government’s long-term ambitions for the sector, providing a sustainable foundation on which we can double the economic contribution and number of people employed in aquaculture between 2016 and 2030. ‘It builds on many of our previous projects around the prevention of sea lice, gill health, and environmental impact by adopting approaches taken in other sectors and applying them to aquaculture.’

02/07/2019 11:26:14

All the latest industry news from the UK

Scottish salmon UK’s top food export again SCOTTISH farmed salmon has reclaimed its spot as the UK’s largest food export, after sales to overseas buyers totalled £206.5 million in the first quarter of 2019. Volumes for Q1 were up 19.9 per cent, bringing increased sales of £59.9 million. Overall UK exports of food and drink for Q1 were valued at £5.8 billion, up year on year by almost 11 per cent. The figures, from Her Majesty’s Customs & Excise, show export growth was strongest in non-EU markets, with countries including Japan, Taiwan and Australia buying increasing amounts of UK food and drink products. Julie Hesketh-Laird, chief executive of the Scottish Salmon Producers Organisation (SSPO), said: ‘These latest export figures confirm Scottish salmon’s position as the UK’s largest food export. ‘With France, USA and China firmly established as strategically important markets, the international appetite for salmon sees exports extending to areas as far flung as Asia, the Middle East and throughout the EU. ‘All markets look for quality, taste and provenance and clearly Scottish salmon delivers on those attributes. ‘It’s a very positive start to 2019 and the salmon farmers are working hard to meet the growing demands for the rest of the year.’

Above: Quality, taste and provenance

She added: ‘The growth currently being enjoyed by the Scottish salmon sector is the result of continued innovation and investment, by farmers and partners in the supply chain, in people, skills, research and new facilities. ‘Taking the number one position in such a dynamic manufacturing industry is testament to the dedication of the thousands of people directly employed by Scottish salmon farming in some of the UK’s most remote, rural communities and the thousands more employed in supporting the sector.’

The world moves forward Feeding is the most important task in aquaculture. Therefore, you should choose the best and most advanced tool. We in Steinsvik have worked with feeding systems since the 80s. Time after time, systems like Are 126, MultiFeeder, GMT Feeder and FeedStation have set the standard for what is possible to achieve with a central feeding system. Around the world, our solutions are used both for land and sea based farming. Now we have raised the bar once again. We present Next Generation FeedStation!

Contact us for more information. Visit us at Aqua Nor - Stand A-158, also at Skansen

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02/07/2019 11:26:36

United Kingdom News

Ace pair at Palace to pick up Queen’s Award for Enterprise PRINCE Charles learnt about welfare improvements on fish farms when Dundee based business Ace Aquatec paid a visit to Buckingham Palace in June. The aquaculture technology company won a prestigious Queen’s Award for Enterprise Innovation, its second in two years, for developing a humane electric stunner. Ace’s head of sales and marketing, Mike Forbes, went to the Palace to collect the award with Dr Jeff Lines, who helped create the technology. The company’s Humane Stunner Universal (HSU) uses electricity to render fish unconscious immediately, without removing them from the water, reducing fish stress and improving quality. Forbes said Prince Charles, who presented the award, spoke to the Ace Aquatec team for a couple of minutes about how farms are using its in-water electric stunner to reduce fish stress.

‘He said it was good to hear so much effort is being put into improving animal welfare on fish farms,’ Forbes added. In the autumn of 2016, Charles toured one of Mowi Scotland’s fish farms and subsequently took an interest in salmon farming, leading high level talks between the sector and angling leaders, through his International Sustainability Unit. Ace Aquatec won the Queen’s Award last year for its acoustic deterrents. On hearing about the second award earlier this year, the company’s managing director, Nathan Pyne-Carter, said: ‘Being recognised last year for the positive difference our predator deterrents are having on the Scottish economy was amazing, and to be acknowledged again this year for the wider global impact our electric stunning technology has on animal welfare is a huge honour.’

Above: Dr Jeff Lines and Mike Forbes at Buckingham Palace


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Finding out fish farm facts on FaceTime

SCHOOLCHILDREN in England are being taught about salmon farming in Scotland thanks to an initiative called ‘FaceTime a Farmer’. Pupils at Washingborough Academy in Lincolnshire were paired with Mowi Scotland Top: Jayne MacKay shows children a salmon and taken, first, on a virtual at Mowi’s Loch Leven farm, with Lewis tour of the company’s Inchmore Gibson, assistant manager hatchery. Above: The class in Lincolnshire Mowi’s Jayne MacKay, who hosted the call with the class of nine and ten-year-olds, said they asked good questions, such as ‘how much does it cost to produce a fish?’ and ‘how much do you sell a whole fish for?’ The youngsters were also interested in how much the recirculation hatchery cost to build (about £26.5 million), how much water it used in a day, and whether the fish had names. The idea behind FaceTime a Farmer is to connect children to the food they eat, and Mowi was invited to join by its customer, Sainsbury’s, which sponsors the scheme. Launched by LEAF (Linking Environment and Farming), the project involves regular FaceTime or Skype calls between a farm and a classroom. In Mowi’s first call, MacKay and Inchmore assistant manager Ben Seaman introduced themselves, before giving the children a virtual tour of the hatchery, showing them the tanks and fish. MacKay’s next call was at the firm’s Leven farm, where the class were shown salmon in seawater and cleaner fish. The third call will be from Mowi’s Blar Mhor processing plant, with the pupils given an insight into quality checks before fish are loaded on to lorries. ‘We are excited to take part in this as it’s something we have never carried out before and it is bringing aquaculture to those in places they are not at all familiar with,’ said MacKay. More than 150 school and farmer pairings have already been made in the FaceTime a Farmer programme, according to LEAF.

02/07/2019 11:27:05

All the latest industry news from the UK

Crown Estate shake-up empowers local communities LOCAL communities will have more say in how the seabed and coastline is managed as changes to the Scottish Crown Estate come into force. Crown Estate Scotland launched the Local Pilots Management Scheme in 2018 to create opportunities for organisations to get more involved in managing Crown assets. Four communities – Orkney Islands Council, Shetland Islands Council, the Western Isles and the Forth Salmon Fishery District – will now take respon- Above: Managing the coastline sibility for more decisions relating to seabed, coastline and other land. The Crown Estate leases virtually all seabed out to 12 nautical miles, covering some 750 fish farming sites. It is not yet known how the devolution of decision making will affect the salmon farming industry. In the Western Isles, a joint proposal between the local authority and a leading landowner (the Galson Estate Trust) aims to ‘empower island communities’.This will involve determining leases for renewable energy developments and for all other developments in the Hebrides marine region. A Community Impact Assessment will ‘allow affected communities to make their views on a proposed development known to decision makers and to highlight negative and positive impacts’, according to a summary of the proposal submitted to Crown Estate Scotland. The Orkney Islands Council pilot scheme, meanwhile, ‘proposes an innovative approach to deliver enhanced local decision

making on seabed leasing through an Orkney Islands Marine Planning Partnership’. It is proposed that a locally accountable process will be established whereby Orkney Islands Council would consider an application and establish a position on whether to grant a new lease option and any special conditions that should be attached to the grant of a lease. Crown Estate Scotland would then be responsible for implementing the final decision made. Orkney Islands Council added: ‘The pilot scheme will bring forward significant and measurable social, economic and environmental benefits, empowering the local community to maximise the value from seabed assets and deliver sustainable economic growth.’ The Shetland proposal relates to the Sullom Voe Harbour Area, a major oil and gas production zone. Changes in this sector mean there is scope to look at the potential for other future developments within the area, said Shetland Council. ‘To ensure that any potential development is sustainable and meets with community aspirations, a masterplan is being developed for the area.’ Crown Estate Scotland chief executive Simon Hodge said: ‘The applications we received contained an array of ideas and proposals, which is yet further evidence of the wide range of local expertise and vision. ‘We’ll be building on this scheme to find new ways of managing Scotland’s natural assets in a way that benefits all.’

How UK can help narrow global ‘protein gap’ Turning carbon dioxide into fish feed

AN insect feed lobbying group has called on the UK government to support the growth of its sector, which it said could help narrow the global ‘protein gap’. The Insect Biomass Conversion Task and Finish Group (IBCTFG) said the insect for feed industry could transform agri-food productivity in the UK. The sector could be worth £1 billion and generate an estimated 3,300 direct jobs and 600 indirect jobs in just five years, the group claimed. The global demand for protein outweighs supply, and introducing insect protein to supplement common alternatives such as fishmeal or soya would assist sustainable aquaculture growth, said the IBCTFG. The organisation is committed to delivering insect production at scale in the UK and has just released its first UK market report evaluating the case for the government’s support of insect biomass conversion. Among its recommendations are: The UK government to issue a national statement of support; Government and industry to support a central body that could drive rapid sector development

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for the UK; Government and industry to collaborate to secure dedicated funds to drive market development; Government to lead on delivering insect biomass legislation and regulation; and Government to devise and provide short term fiscal incentives for early adopters. Andrew Swift, CEO of Fera (the Food and Environment Research Agency) and coordinator of the Insect Biomass Conversion Task and Finish Group said: ‘Insect protein production can be a big part of the solution to the global protein deficit for sustainable rearing of livestock. ‘This innovative and ‘clean’ industry has huge economic and environmental potential. It is critical that government acts swiftly to ensure the UK does not lose further ground in this rapidly developing global market.’

A PROJECT to capture carbon dioxide emissions to create animal feed protein has been launched by a UK start-up in collaboration with a power station. Deep Branch Biotechnology, a Nottingham University based company, plans to use flue gas from one of the biomass power generation units of Drax, in North Yorkshire, along with hydrogen, to enable gas fermentation to take place. The resulting product is single cell protein, which comes out as a milk-like liquid when harvested. It is then dried into powder and 70 per cent of what remains are proteins that can be used as a fishmeal replacement. One of the advantages of Deep Branch’s system is that rather than requiring energy to separate CO2, flue gas can be delivered directly to microbes. This can convert up to 70 per cent of the captured CO2 into proteins. But for such a system

to have a real impact it needs to be deployed at scale. The process has been trialled in labs and proved highly efficient, with 10kg of CO2 producing seven kilos of protein. Now, the partnership with Drax -the biggest renewable electricity generator in the UK – offers the opportunity to test Deep Branch’s process and technology at grid-scale. Peter Rowe, Deep Branch CEO, said: ‘Because Drax’s biomass units are carbon neutral at the point of generation, the process creates an extremely low carbon protein. ‘If you divorce the negative environmental impacts of industries like agriculture from its growth then you can provide more whilst impacting less.’


02/07/2019 11:27:22

United Kingdom News

Industry tributes as Tavish bows out of Holyrood

Above: Tavish Scott

ONE of the Scottish salmon industry’s staunchest champions, Tavish Scott, is to stand down from frontline politics. The former Liberal Democrat leader and MSP for the Shetlands was elected to the first parliament 20 years ago and has long celebrated the importance of aquaculture in his constituency and beyond. During the salmon farming debate in the Scottish parliament in February, when MSPs discussed the Rural Economy and Connectivity (REC) committee’s inquiry of 2018, Scott was quick to defend a sector that boosts the economy and local employment. ‘Over the years, the industry has been attacked by big landed interests with fishing rivers and by the Greens,’ said Scott, who is to take up a job as head of external affairs for Scottish Rugby. Talking of his constituents, he said: ‘The office window of Dennis and Katrine Johnson at Uyeasound in Unst looks out over a pristine marine landscape. ‘They have been working in this industry for many years, for a variety of companies, and they would not recognise some of the things that have been said in the debate —they certainly would not recognise that last speech [by Green MSP Mark Ruskell] and the allegations of deliberate malpractice by people in the industry. ‘A lot of people do not seem to know the history of salmon farming. It started as a small crofting business in lots of parts of Scotland, including on the west coast, and the industry is now owned largely by international companies. ‘It has changed overwhelmingly. However, what has not changed is the number of people who are employed by the industry in parts of Scotland who simply would not have jobs if salmon farming did not exist. ‘Unst, Yell and Fetlar are the best examples of that that I know of anywhere in Scotland. Salmon farming accounts for 110 direct jobs on those islands and any number of hundreds


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of indirect jobs. Those jobs and the communities on those islands would not exist were it not for that industry. ‘The idea that those people deliberately pollute and deliberately do nothing about the issues of sea lice, mortality and so on is a line of argument that I simply do not recognise.’ Some 23 per cent of Scottish production of farmed salmon is in Shetland, and it is worth £14 million to the local economy, said Scott. ‘The issue is not just about the direct jobs in the industry; it is about the indirect jobs that go with it. It is about the wellboats and haulage companies. ‘If people drive down the M74 and happen to look out on the right-hand side as they go past Larkhall, they will see a bunch of logistics centres, all of which employ people from constituencies in the central belt of Scotland who work supporting the salmon farming industry. ‘The issue is not just about rural areas; it goes right across Scotland.’ Scottish Salmon Producers’ Organisation general manager David Sandison said: ‘Tavish has been a staunch ally of the salmon farming industry throughout his time representing Shetland in Holyrood. ‘He has always recognised how vital our industry is to the economic and social wellbeing of these islands and indeed the whole of Scotland. ‘He has kept abreast of the tremendous pace of change that our industry has gone

through in the 20 years since the parliament came into being and I would wish him well in his new ventures.’ Scottish Sea Farms’ managing director Jim Gallagher said: ‘Throughout his years as MSP for Shetland, Tavish has shown great diligence in engaging with a sector that’s of huge importance to his constituents. ‘Therefore, when he speaks on the subject, he speaks with authority, whether that’s discussing the local jobs supported by the sector, the boost to local skills and training, or the role of salmon farming in helping ensure that those living in remote communities enjoy the same opportunities to prosper as those living on mainland Scotland. ‘As a farmer himself, Tavish also understands the challenges that come with raising livestock of any kind and has invested a lot of time in learning just how much is being done to farm evermore responsibly. ‘We’re hugely sad to see such knowledge leave Scottish politics but wish Tavish every success in his new role with Scottish Rugby.’ Colin Blair, managing director of Cooke Aquaculture, said: ‘For 20 years as Shetland’s MSP, Tavish Scott has been a tireless and diligent representative for his constituency. ‘During that time, Tavish has been a strong advocate of the sector and understood its importance to the Shetland community and the wider UK economy. ‘By immersing himself fully within our sector, he took the time to learn about all aspects of fish farming and visited our facilities on several occasions. ‘His impassioned support during the recent parliamentary debates helped showcase the sector’s innovation and his enthusiasm in the Scottish parliament will be missed. ‘We would like to thank Tavish for his support and wish him all the best in his new role at Scottish Rugby.’

He has always “ recognised how vital

our industry is to the economic and social wellbeing of these islands and indeed the whole of Scotland

02/07/2019 11:28:26

All the latest industry news from the UK

SSPO looks for new chair to guide it through ‘period of change’

Above: Gilpin Bradley

THE Scottish Salmon Producers’ Organisation is recruiting for a new chairman to ‘help drive the SSPO agenda forward and to bring rigour and focus to the board’. The successful candidate will replace Gilpin Bradley, managing director of Wester Ross Fisheries, who stepped into the post two and a half years ago. The organisation, which currently represents all Scotland’s seven salmon farming companies, is undergoing what it calls an organisational restructure to support a three-year strategy and operational plan. In a recruitment brochure, the SSPO’s chief executive, Julie HeskethLaird, said: ‘The incoming chair will lead the board and executive to take forward a detailed review of the governance of the board and organisation, and support the bedding in of the ongoing structural changes. ‘The board wishes to see further change implemented to put in place a world class salmon producer organisation operating with the highest levels of effectiveness.’ The specifications for the chair’s role, outlined by executive recruitment agency FWB Park Brown, include: • A passion for the cause of the SSPO; • Outstanding leadership skills

UK news.indd 9

with the experience, abilities and diplomacy to guide the SSPO through a continuing period of change and renewal; • Experience of broadening an organisation’s audience and engagement. Key responsibilities of the position include representing the SSPO in an ambassadorial role; presenting the strategy and policies of the SSPO and actively promoting its interests to the outside world, including the media and senior business, administrative and political figures; and liaising with other organisations. The expected time commitment of the post is approximately 30 days per year. Bradley replaced Anne MacColl as chairman in February 2017, and has overseen the transition of the SSPO under its long serving chief executive Scott Landsburgh, who retired last year, to Hesketh-Laird. A spokesperson for the SSPO said: ‘The SSPO has been undergoing a process of change – including the recruitment of a new chief executive – during which time Gilpin Bradley has very ably undertaken the temporary role of chairman to help steer us through the transition. ‘The SSPO is now reverting to having an independent chair. We look forward to recruiting someone who

Why Scottish salmon farmers ‘inspire Britain’

SCOTLAND’S salmon farmers are included in the London Stock Exchange’s list of inspirational businesses. Mowi Scotland, one of 38 Scottish names included, features in the £100 to £150 million group of ‘1,000 Companies to Inspire Britain’, now in its sixth edition. And Wester Ross Fisheries makes it into the £10 to £20 million category. Seafood business Aquascot, meanwhile, is listed among the £50 to £75 million enterprises in the report. The report identifies the UK’s most dynamic and fastest growing will relish the role of representing small and medium sized one of Scotland’s most successful and firms. dynamic food sectors.’ Scotland’s First MinThe SSPO, which has recently moved ister, Nicola Sturgeon, its head office from Perth to Edinsaid: ‘I’m delighted burgh, outlines its priorities in the that this year’s report recruitment brochure under three includes a dedicated separate categories: engagement, Scottish chapter. sustainability and governance. ‘It highlights the great In the first, it highlights building innovative businesses the industry’s broader reputation as emerging from Scot‘a responsible and positive force in land.’ Scotland’; and demonstrating what Philip Hammond, Scottish salmon ‘puts back’ through Chancellor of the its Community Charter, and commuExchequer, said:‘Small nity benefits, such as house building, businesses not only broadband, and sponsorship. generate over 50 per Other priorities include accelerating cent of all private sector and implementing the transparency turnover in the UK, agenda; and engagement with the they also account for supply chain. 60 per cent of all UK Sustainability priorities include private sector employcontinued data collection and analment. ysis; working with governments and ‘SMEs are the regulators to ensure policies/models backbone of the UK and regulations are fit for purpose and economy and we are evidence based; supporting delivery dedicated to supportof the 2030 ambition, and the Farmed ing these high growth Fish Health Framework; and the fundcompanies to achieve ing (via a separate levy on members) of their potential. an R&D project agreed by the board. ‘I congratulate all the And under governance strategy, the companies that are priority is to ‘build the SSPO as a proincluded in this year’s fessional organisation, complementary 1,000 Companies to to/not duplicating SSPO businesses’. Inspire Britain report.’


02/07/2019 11:28:42

European News


New French factory will scale up insect meal

Above: The Ynsect team, pioneers of alternative protein

A FRENCH company producing insect meal as an alternative protein in fish diets has been given €20 million EU backing for a new factory. Ynsect, one of the early pioneers of insect aqua feed, said the new Poulainville plant, on the outskirts of Amiens

in northern France, will be the first fully automated industrial facility to produce premium insect protein. The unit, due to open in 2021, will have an annual capacity of more than 20,000 tonnes of protein -made from mealworm beetles (Tenebrio molitor) -

with the potential to ramp up production to over 200,000 tonnes, with revenues of around €1 billion and the creation of 1,200 direct and indirect jobs eventually. Ynsect claims the new ‘Farmying’ project will benefit the environment by avoiding the

need to reduce wild fish stocks by 800,000 tonnes. Skretting is one of the feed companies that will incorporate Ynsect protein into animal diets. Ynsect said mealworm was the insect species best suited to being farmed on an industrial scale. It consumes all sorts of organic matter, even low-grade materials. It also grows quickly and requires less space, less earth and less water than other animal protein sources. And it gives off less ammonia and fewer greenhouses gases than other premium animal proteins. The technology used

in the Farmying project was developed by Ynsect, which has 25 patents on its innovations. The technology is already being used at the first Ynsect site in Dôle, in the Jura region of eastern France, which has a capacity to produce up to 30 tonnes a month. Speaking at the official launch, Antoine Hubert, CEO and founder of Ynsect, said the Farmyng project would ‘lay the foundations for a new protein supply chain to meet the world’s immense food challenge’. ‘Europe is demonstrating its global leadership in alternative protein sources and

is home to trailblazers throughout the value chain,’ he said. Philippe Mengal, executive director of co-funder Bio-Based Industries Joint Undertaking (BBI JU), said: ‘For BBI JU, funding the first industrial bio-refinery able to turn insects into premium, high value proteins for animal feed and fertilisers was a strategic priority. ‘One of our key goals is to de-risk investments like this that have a significant socio-economic impact. ‘The flagship Farmyng project will also further BBI JU’s strategic aim of reducing the EU’s reliance on massive protein imports.’

Skretting backs black soldier fly feed FEED giant Skretting signed a deal with insect meal producer Protix last month that could see up to 5.5 million salmon servings a year with the alternative protein in the diet. News of the agreement came as Protix officially opened its state-of-the-art insect production facility in Bergen op Zoom, in the Netherlands. The event was attended by King Willem-Alexander, as well as Dr Jenna Bowyer, Skretting project procurement manager, and Jose Villalon, Nutreco (Skretting’s parent company) corporate sustainability director. A 30 million tonne projected increase in aquaculture production in the near future means there will be a need for an additional 45 million tonnes of raw material, said Skretting.


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Commercial production of insect meal could help meet this demand in a sustainable way, the company added. Protix, which produces protein from black soldier fly (hermetia illucens), showed guests around its new plant. ‘This opening marks a real transformation for the entire insect industry, not just for Protix,’ said Protix CEO Kees Aarts. ‘This nursery is unique in the Netherlands, Europe and the world. We are delighted that companies like Skretting are enabling the growing sector of insect protein.’ Skretting is committed to the development of novel ingredients, with huge investment in R&D. Bower said: ‘It is essential for us that these new ingredients are not only safe and sustainable, but

also ensure that the end product maintains the nutritional benefits we have come to expect from high quality seafood. ‘The aquaculture industry is very large and growing, and it is essen-

tial for us to see novel ingredients brought to commercial scale. ‘We at Skretting support Protix in their developments and we look forward to working with more players in this field.’

Above: Jenna Bower of Skretting and Kees Aarts of Protix

02/07/2019 11:41:34

All the latest industry news from Europe

Iceland must ‘beef up’ salmon air links ICELAND must improve its air transport links and copy the Scottish sector on products if it is to enable its growing farmed salmon exports to reach the right markets, a leading logistics expert has said. Valdimar Óskarsson, managing director of the international forwarding service DB Schenker, based in Iceland, told a recent business conference that carrying capacity is far below demand. The problem had become worse, especially to important markets in the United States, since the collapse of the airline WOW in March. Right: Valdimar Óskarsson His advice came as Iceland in the future economy of the country. revealed the value of farmed fish The Confederation of Icelandic Fishery exports jumped by 71 per cent to 8.6 billion Companies (SFS) said farmed fish (mainly kroner – or £54-million – during the first four salmon) now represented 10 per cent of all months of this year. seafood exports, remarkable in a country The announcement comes as Iceland’s parliawhich is renowned for its huge focus on ment, the Althing, approved a new bill on the conventional deep sea fishing. future of the industry which includes a number SFS said: “The ratio has never been higher. of amendments. The exports success reflects Looking ahead we can safely assume that the growing confidence within the sector, which aquaculture exports will reach ISK 25 billion has built itself up slowly under highly stringent (around £160-million) this year. It is therefore conditions, that it is now set to play a key role

clear that aquaculture is establishing itself as an important export industry, which is attracting a great deal of foreign currency to the country. ” April was the best month with overseas sales reaching ISK 2-billion, an increase of 137 per cent on the same month a year ago. Sales are also thought to have been helped by the recent depreciation of the kroner. Óskarsson said it was important that Iceland’s airports had a good international connection. But he added that flights from the country were expensive and this put its fish at a major price disadvantage. Óskarsson’s suggestion was to examine and possibly adopt the Faroese system, which includes sending the salmon first by ship to ports close to larger international airports and then flying it out on the final leg of the journey.

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European News.indd 11


02/07/2019 11:41:57

European News

Danes feed greener growth in China growth performance and fish welfare, while limiting the discharge of nitrogen and phosphorous into the local ecosystem. The Chinese government is rolling out new guidelines to accelerate the green development of its aquaculture industry, which include a set of policies to reduce fish farmers’ overall environmental footprint and promote the transformation of the sector. BioMar CEO Carlos Diaz said: ‘Our extensive knowledge on nutritional requirements of trout, as well as a strict Above: Signing of the agreement between BioMar and selection of raw materials according to Long Yang Xia in Brande, Denmark their characteristics and contribution BIOMAR has sealed a deal with the largest trout to sustainability impacts, have together farmer in China to supply a diet with almost made it possible to discover an optimal feed half the environmental impact of local Chinese recipe and feeding strategy. feed. ‘Through the on-site trials, we have been able A delegation from China, led by Yan Jinhai, to demonstrate a better total performance. the vice governor of the Peoples Government of ‘The importance to our environment for proQinghai Province, was in BioMar’s production tecting ecosystems can’t be under-estimated.’ facilities in Brande, Denmark, to witness the Long Yang Xia is a green pioneer in China signing of the agreement between the feed which has also invested in modern aquaculture company and trout producer Long Yang Xia. technologies. It is expected that other farmers It comes after two years of technical, on-site in the Chinese market will look to more sustaintrials and collaboration between the Danes and able feed solutions as the Chinese government Chinese to develop the high performance feed. implements its new initiative, Green DevelopThe recipe considered the parameters of ment of Aquaculture.

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European News.indd 12

AKVA Group Denmark has secured a new land based agreement to deliver a smolt facility to Murmansk based Russian Aquaculture. The estimated value of the contract is EUR 11.9 million and the project is due to be completed in the second quarter of 2020, with production starting in 2021. AKVA group Denmark has recently expanded its land based division. Russian Aquaculture’s new plant will reduce its dependency on buying fry from Norway. It has a target to produce 50,000 tonnes within the next five years.

Bakkafrost’s ‘clever way’ to create 40% growth

Above: Bigger smolt strategy

THE Faroe Islands’ biggest salmon farmer, Bakkafrost, expects volume growth of 40 per cent over the next four years, CEO Regin Jacobsen said last month. The increase of 22,000 tonnes, to 76,000 tonnes, will be driven partly by larger smolt and the newly developed Suduroy cluster of farms in the south. When Bakkafrost’s Strond smolt plant is operating at full capacity – about six months from now – it will produce 3,000 tonnes of smolts a year, which corresponds to seven million fish at 500g. Other sites will then be converted to produce 500g smolts as well. At a Capital Markets Day presentation, Jacobsen said Bakkafrost’s larger smolt strategy would reduce cycles, with smolt size gradually increasing from 100-200g to 500g by 2022. Smolt release will increase from 10-11 million to 16 million over the next four years, enabling Bakkafrost to grow its whole operation and achieve 76,000 tonnes of harvested salmon. This was a ‘clever way to create growth’, he said; it was based on existing licences in the fjords and excluded offshore developments. But overall capacity would be expanded even further by moving some sites to more exposed areas, and reducing the fjord stage even more. The Faroe Islands had introduced legislation enabling Bakkafrost to have new licences offshore and the company could ‘copy’ infrastructure that worked elsewhere. ‘We are building capacity for 100,000 tonnes,’ said Jacobsen, adding that Bakkafrost was investing 2.5 billion DKK (about £298 million) in the next four years, had plans to take salmon weights up to six kilos and could grow beyond 100,000 tonnes in the future.

02/07/2019 11:42:20

All the latest industry news from Europe

First bass and bream farms win ASC approval audits in the weeks after the FOUR farms in Turkey and Greece standard went live. have become the first in the Antonis Chachlakis, chariman world to be certified to the ASC’s and CEO of Nireus, said: ‘Nireus is new sea bass, sea bream, and very proud to be a pioneer in the meagre standard. responsible growth of aquaculTwo farms operated by Nireus in ture, according to ASC’s new Greece and two operated by Surstandard.’ san in Turkey achieved certificaKerem Göksel, sales director at tion at the same time on June 5. Sursan, added: ‘We are already The ASC (Aquaculture Stewardexperiencing demand for ASC ship Council) expanded its procertified sea bass and sea bream gramme in response to demand. from our customers which shows The species have traditionally been enjoyed by consumers in Eu- their appreciation for the commitments we’ve made.’ ropean markets, but production Chris Ninnes, CEO of the ASC, has grown in Turkey and Greece to said: ‘We’re delighted to see meet rising world demand. such a positive response to the The ASC said the response from standard. It’s gratifying that the producers to its new standard had been enthusiastic, with farms first farms certified to this new standard are in scheduling audits Turkey and Greece, from the first day important centres the certification of production for become available. these increasingly The audits and popular species. certification for ‘Demand for sea the first four farms bass, sea bream to win approval and meagre is were carried out by rising, and it’s Acoura. Nearly 30 important that additional farms farms act responin Turkey, Greece, sibly as production Spain, Croatia and expands.’ Albania underwent Above: Chris Ninnes

Salmon fed algal oil on sale in French shops

Above: Norwegian salmon farm. Below: Frank Beissmann, CFO of Veramaris

and Karim Kurmaly, CEO

SALMON fed with marine algal oil is now on sale in more than 100 stores in north-east France. The fish, farmed by Norwegian company Lingalaks, have been on a diet developed by Skretting and containing omega-3 EPA and DHA algal oil as an alternative to fish oil from wild caught fish. The oil is made by Veramaris, a joint venture between DSM and Evonik, and is produced through large-scale fermentation. It is the only commercial source of omega-3 fatty acids from algae that is rich in both EPA and DHA, and will help the aquaculture industry become less dependent on finite marine resources, said Veramaris. ‘Omega-3s are among the most important nutrients that people need for a healthy life,’ said Veramaris CEO Karim Kurmaly. ‘Omega-3 EPA and DHA are at the very core of the salmon brand promise, making salmon a food choice consumers can count on when it comes to health benefits. ‘This is our contribution to differentiate salmon and support retailers in increasing their fair share index of the salmon category.’ Veramaris has a plant in Slovakia and has invested more than $200 AQUACULTURE start-ups have a unique opportunity to meet investors at million in a new facility in Blair, Nebraska, in the US. a special innovation forum being held during the European Aquaculture The factory was due to begin producing and delivering the algal oil Society (EAS) conference in Berlin this autumn. at an industrial scale from July 10. The EAS brings together the international aquaculture community at The initial annual production capacity will meet approximately 15 its annual events, which feature a multi-disciplinary scientific conferper cent of the total current annual demand for EPA and DHA by the ence alongside a trade fare and business meetings. This gathering of industry and academic talent, staged in a different salmon aquaculture industry. Pilot quantities for market development purposes have already been European city each year, helps forge the innovation that drives growth available for the past two years. in the sector worldwide. The French retailer Supermarché Match, headquartered in La MadeIt is an ideal platform, said the EAS, to promote emerging companies leine, has introduced salmon reared on diets including Veramaris oil and match them with potential funding. in all 116 of its outlets. The Aquaculture Europe Innovation Forum offers a chance for entre‘The salmon we are now able preneurs, investors, farmers, supply and service companies and sciento offer to our customers tists to meet during a full-day programme on Wednesday, October 9, at is rich in omega-3 EPA Aquaculture Europe 2019 in Berlin. Fledgling businesses will be able to pitch ideas to an audience repre- and DHA from natural marine algae,’ said senting the global aquaculture sector, and interact with key investors Nicolas Baroux, head and decision makers in the industry. There will also be time for networking and further one to one meetings of procurement at Supermarché with interested parties. Match. ‘This To take part and make a pitch at the Innovation Forum, submit your is our conapplication June 30. tribution to conserving Successful applicants will be informed by July 31. marine The Innovation Forum programme and keynote speakers will be anresources.’ nounced soon.

Berlin to provide unique showcase for aquaculture start-ups

European News.indd 13


02/07/2019 11:42:48

World News


Algae oil introduced into shrimp feed but do farmers want it?


Above: Seafood panel during the SeaWeb Seafood Summit in Bangkok






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World news.indd 14

18/02/2015 11:57

18/02/2015 11:57

AN alternative feed ingredient containing algal oil has been fed to shrimp in a successful trial, conducted by Thai Union. The company, which also recently trialled the alternative Feedkind protein at one of its shrimp farms, has a goal to bring more responsibly sourced and sustainably harvested shrimp to market. In the latest project, shrimp were fed

AlgaPrime DHA, an algae based source of long-chain omega-3s produced by Corbion. Announcing the results of the trial at the SeaWeb Seafood Summit in Bangkok last month, Corbion global aquaculture lead Chris Haacke said: ‘Shrimp farming is one of the fastest growing sectors in the aquaculture industry, and AlgaPrime DHA has the potential to offer shrimp farmers assurance in traceability and sustainability of their feed, while also allowing them to add beneficial omega3s to their product.’ However, Darian McBain, Thai Union’s global director of sustainability, said later, during a panel discussion at the summit, that although the company had engaged in feed trials with both Feedkind and AlgaPrime, farmers, ‘by and large, don’t want it’.

‘If it doesn’t smell like fish, they don’t think it’s appropriate,’ she said, according to a report of the panel debate by the Global Aquaculture Advocate. ‘We put tuna by-products in the feed [normally]. If you’re replacing fishmeal and fish oil, farmers say they don’t want that product. Their concern is growth rate and getting a return on the shrimp they’ve seeded their ponds with. ‘We’ve proven the case. We got it to market,’ she added. ‘We need someone to buy it. We have a few end customers interested, nobody’s buying it yet.’ Corbion said shrimp farming currently consumes approximately 100,000 tonnes of fish oil annually, predominantly because fish oil contains DHA, a key ingredient in shrimp growth and development.

BP pumps $30m into alternative feed

CALYSTA, the US company behind the alternative protein source FeedKind, has secured a $30 million endorsement from oil giant BP to scale up production.The investment will enable the global roll-out of the fish feed ingredient, which is currently being produced from the company’s Market Introduction Facility on Teesside, in north-east England. FeedKind, a single-cell protein, is manufactured through a gas fermentation process using naturally occurring, non-GM microbes with the ability to use methane as their energy source. US headquartered Calysta’s UK operation has capacity for 60 tonnes, and the group is building a new site in Memphis, Tennessee, which will be able to produce 100,000 tonnes. Alan Shaw, Calysta president and CEO, said: ‘Welcoming BP as a partner is a tremendous step forward for FeedKind protein and the best indicator yet that Calysta’s solution to food insecurity in a resource constrained world can and will achieve global scale.’

02/07/2019 11:46:09

World News

Intelligent approach to NZ aquaculture

Above: The Cawthron Insititute, looking to the future

AN artificial intelligence company in New Zealand is helping scientists in the region count and identify different algae. The Nelson Artificial Intelligence Institute is working with the Cawthron Institute in Nelson, using computer vision and deep learning. The technology is similar to that employed in recognising an individual face in a range of images, according to a report by news site. Nelson Artificial Intelligence Institute director Brian Russell said for a human to manually detect and count the different algae in one sample is a challenging job – ‘and that’s a trained biologist with a science degree and then one to two years training at Cawthron’. ‘In a sample, there’s thousands and you’ve got to count them and detect the one or two toxic ones. ‘That’s what’s detecting things like toxic algal blooms in the [Malborough] Sounds, which if they don’t get ahead of it, then you can’t harvest out of shellfish. [That could have a] really big economic impact, people’s jobs are affected.’ The team at the AI institute designed software similar to what the scientists already used in order to automate the algae identification role. But in the background it was taking a photo and recording a ‘label’ every time different algae were identified. Russell said: ‘So now we’re growing this database of all this labelled data. Basically, it’s becoming as expert as the scientist and we can scale it and go faster and faster and faster.’ Fellow director Mark Houghton-Brown said the project isn’t finished yet but it has already brought the job down to about an hour. The institute hopes it can combine its artificial intelligence knowhow with the region’s aquaculture expertise to become a world leader in AI in aquaculture. Russell added: ‘We need this Silicon Valley technology to come in and start helping the primary sector, otherwise it’s going to get disrupted from offshore and then we may not have the markets we want in the future. ‘We need to scale up and actually do it, otherwise others will and then we’ll end up having to buy in their technology.’ The Cawthron Institute was recently awarded $6 million funding for a planned algae centre.

World news.indd 15

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02/07/2019 11:47:22

World News

World first for ASC approved King Kampachi A KAMPACHI farm in Mexico has received Aquaculture Stewardship Council (ASC) certification, a world first for the species. The farm, 6km offshore in the Gulf of California, near La Paz, rears kampachi in submersible cages. The fish – also known as yellowtail or almaco jack (Seriola rivoliana) -are grown in four 10,000 cubic metre pens, 30m in diameter and 17m deep, each independently submersible. Pioneered by Neil Anthony Sims, co-founder of the Kampachi Company, the King Kampachi brand made its US debut at the Boston seafood expo in March - to great acclaim by showgoers. The product is now available in the United States and Canada, and will soon be sold in Europe and Japan. Sims has been at the forefront of the campaign to open US federal waters to aquaculture. He has trialled ocean bound ‘Aquapods’ off Hawaii and has new plans involving submersible cage technology in the Gulf of Mexico, off Right: Neil Anthony Sims Sarasota, Florida. His Aquapod trial, the Velella Beta project off the coast of Kona, Hawaii, won one of Time Magazine’s 25 Best Inventions of the Year in 2012, but it proved to be difficult to scale up. Sims said: ‘We’re going to keep pushing the boundaries but we also want to be able to

produce fish at scale.’ Of the ASC certification, he said: ‘We believe it is not enough to claim we are doing this responsibly, we want to have third party validation of that. That is important to build consumer confidence in our products.’ The Kampachi Company has the capacity to produce 500-600 tonnes a year at its La Paz site and Sims expects to be harvesting more than 10 tonnes per week by the end of 2019.

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World news.indd 16

02/07/2019 11:47:44

All the latest industry news from around the world

Benchmark buys back breeding unit BENCHMARK Holdings, the of its genetics programme locally. aquaculture health, nutrition and Chile is the world’s second larggenetics business, completed the est salmon producing country, and dissolution of its joint venture with an important market in BenchAquaChile last month. mark’s long term strategy. Benchmark will receive its Malcolm Pye, Benchmark CEO, $16.25 million original investment, said: ‘We are pleased to have the and the company will also receive opportunity to fully own the world the IP rights, genetics stock and class salmon breeding facility curbiomass in the joint venture. rently owned by the joint venture, The dissolution has created and to reinvest the funds to move an opportunity for the company towards full scale production and to take control of a land based commercialisation. salmon breeding facility belonging ‘We look forward to strengthto the joint venture. ening both our relationships and The move follows the acquisition cooperation with existing and of AquaChile by Agrosuper. new partners in Chile. Whilst this Benchmark Genetics, marks a change to Benchunder the joint venture mark’s approach to the with AquaChile, has market, it is a positive been successful in step towards fulfillaccelerating its ening our key objective try into the Chilean of accelerating our market. establishment of a This saw the launch strong local presof Benchmark Genetics ence in this important Chile in October 2018, market, in line with our and the establishment Above: Malcolm Pye strategy.’

BioMar in Chilean feed factory deal BIOMAR Group acquired the 50 per cent remaining shares in the Chilean factory Alitec Pargua last month, leaving the Danish feed giant as the sole owner of the former joint venture. On June 5, the Chilean competition authorities confirmed that the acquision by BioMar of Alitec Pargua did not trigger a pre-merger review. As announced in March, BioMar Group and AquaChile entered into an acquisition agreement that would give BioMar full ownership of the Chilean factory Alitec Pargua, in which AquaChile held a 50 per cent interest. The acquisition follows the change in ownership of AquaChile, which was acquired last summer by the Agrosuper group. The Alitec Pargua transaction ends 10 years of collaboration with AquaChile, but BioMar Chile willl continue to have a commercial relationship with the salmon producer. BioMar Chile said it will now get access to greater production capacity. ‘We have during the last years experienced an increasing demand in the market targeting our high performance feed, functional products and services,’ said BioMar CEO Carlos Diaz. ‘We will now have more flexible capacity to meet those demands and we will now be able to plan for future upgrades and expansions of the facility in line with the requirement in the market.’

Above: AquaChile’s Sady Delgado, left, and BioMar’s Eduardo Hagedorn

World news.indd 17


02/07/2019 11:48:03

News extra - Regulation

Sea lice

legislation next year Industry welcomes tighter rules and greater transparency


HE Scottish government is to introduce new legislation next year requiring all marine fish farms to report weekly sea lice levels, one week in arrears, in was announced last month. Fergus Ewing, Rural Economy and Connectivity Secretary, outlined the first part of a programme of regulatory reform in the industry, following two parliamentary inquiries into the sector last year. These found that the status quo in relation to regulatory arrangements was not an option. ‘Today’s statement demonstrates our determination to deliver the necessary changes to strengthen those arrangements,’ said Ewing, addressing MSPs in Holyrood on June 5. ‘Taken together, these new measures signal a major shift from self to statutory regulation.’ Although the sector announced its own sea lice publication plans last year, the government will strengthen the statutory basis of the sea lice regime, ‘to ensure there is consistency of approach and to deliver confidence in the system’. ‘The introduction of legislation will remove any ambiguity with regards to reporting requirements and deliver more detailed information – at both salmon and rainbow trout farms,’ said Ewing. This will provide data to monitor specific farms and issues as they arise,


Fergus.indd 18

as well as allow for further policy change, if needed. Furthermore, the current thresholds from three and eight adult female lice per fish will be reduced to two and six. The lower reporting levels will allow for earlier intervention, said the minister, who added that a further reduction in reporting thresholds, to two and four average adult female lice per fish, will be introduced , if confirmed by a review of the evidence, 12 months following the implementation of the new statutory reporting regime. All sea lice reports to the government’s Fish Health Inspectorate will be published, said Ewing, insisting that the sector must become more transparent. He also said the government will explore how to introduce third party independent checks on fish farm sea lice counts to ensure the accuracy of the information provided. Ewing pointed out that sea lice levels in Scotland’s salmon farming industry were at their lowest average levels in 2018 since records began in 2013. And he paid tribute to salmon producers’ efforts in addressing sea lice challenges, and noted that companies had invested £53.5 million over the past three years on lice removing technologies. Ewing said smaller companies would be given practical support where needed to comply with the new measures, but he acknowledged there was ‘tremendous desire’ by all salmon companies to ensure they were taking all the necessary steps to address health issues. The minister’s announcement followed the publication on June 4 of SEPA’s (Scottish Environment Protection Agency) new finfish regulatory framework which, he said, would enable ‘sustainable growth of aquaculture in the right places’. ‘Tougher regulation will ensure that farms are sited in the most appropriate areas,’ Ewing added. ‘It also means that those sites which may have

Left: Fergus Ewing Above: Sea lice Opposite: Julie HeskethLaird, SSPO chief executive

02/07/2019 11:49:16

Sea lice legislation next year

the potential to sustainably increase, without threatening seabed environmental standards, will be able to do so.’ SEPA’s controversial proposal to move to a feed limit rather than the current biomass limit to regulate the scale of impact from fish farms was under consideration still and subject to industry consultation, the minister confirmed. On wild and farmed salmon interactions, he said the group he set up last year is collating

Fergus.indd 19

recommendations for a future approach. ‘That group is aided by a Technical Working Group which is developing practical arrangements for improving regulation in this area – its work is informed by regulatory regimes elsewhere, including Norway’s.’ The group aims to issue proposals for public consultation this summer. Julie Hesketh-Laird, chief executive of the Scottish Salmon Producers’ Organisation (SSPO), said: ’The Scottish salmon sector has for some time led on ensuring greater transparency and the speedier publication of data. The SSPO has been voluntarily publishing lice data since 2013 and since 2018 reporting has been on a farm by farm basis. ‘We are pleased the Scottish government’s announcements build on this. We welcome the minister’s commitment to public consultation and look forward to engaging fully in it to help ensure that the data collected is used effectively and so the new system can work as well as possible. ‘We would expect everyone with an interest in wild as well as farmed salmon and sea lice to work to the same high levels of transparency and ensure data is accurately collected and quickly reported and published. Building trust in the regulatory system is important.’ On the reduction in sea lice thresholds, Hesketh-Laird said: ‘The Scottish salmon sector welcomes this move to tighter regulation. This follows the recent advances the sector has made in controlling lice with non-medicinal means, measures which have brought lice levels down to their lowest level for six years.’ Also responding to the new measures, Heather Jones, CEO of the Scottish Aquaculture Innovation Centre (SAIC), said: ‘The management, control and prevention of sea lice is critical to the future of fish health

would “Weexpect everyone with an interest in wild as well as farmed salmon to work to the same high levels


02/07/2019 11:49:41

News extra - Regulation

and welfare in Scotland’s aquaculture industry and we welcome today’s progress on this important issue. ‘The use of innovative and integrated methods will be critical to our success in the future and SAIC is prepared to continue its support of the industry’s efforts. ‘We have seen a range of successes in tackling sea lice over the last few

years, which have led to real progress and a noteworthy reduction in their numbers. ‘However, there’s always room for improvement and we’re keen to hear from as many voices as possible – we all know there is still much more to do. ‘Given the value of salmon to Scotland’s economy, it’s incumbent on all of us to work together and look for solutions. ‘We will continue to encourage organisations involved in Scottish salmon production to share valuable insights and collaborate for the continued improvement in fish wellbeing, while also supporting the Scottish environment and wider economy.’ Ewing said draft sea lice legislation would be put out to public consultation for full scrutiny and he expected it to come into force in 2020. FF

Left: Fergus Ewing addresses MSPs

New SEPA rules pave way for bigger salmon farms NEW regulations introduced by the Scottish Environment Protection Agency (SEPA) will allow larger fish farms to operate in Scottish waters if they are sited in sustainable locations. The new rules, first outlined last November and subjected to a Scotland wide consultation, will also see the introduction of more accurate computer modelling to better assess any environmental risks. Tighter standards will be applied to the organic waste deposited by fish farms, limiting the ‘spatial extent of the mixing zone around farms’. ‘The controls applied to these mixing zones will bring them into equivalence with modern practice on mixing zones for other waste effluent


Fergus.indd 20

discharges into the sea, including those from urban waste water,’ said SEPA in a press release announcing the new measures. Farm operators are now required to invest in more accurate monitoring, including of waste coming from fish farms. ‘SEPA will also increase and strengthen monitoring of the impact of fish farms in surrounding areas,’ the organisation said. SEPA said its officers are already engaged in a programme of unannounced visits to confirm compliance with its regulatory requirements. The agency said its framework ‘has the potential to significantly improve the environmental performance of the industry’, and follows research last year into the impact of salmon farm medicine. But there is no specific mention of a new approach for controlling the use of in-feed anti-lice drug emamectin benzoate (SLICE), highlighted in the proposals. Nor is there further word of the proposal mooted in November to

02/07/2019 11:50:29

Sea lice legislation next year

may allow for the approval of larger “Itfarms than would have traditionally been approved ”

establish a new SEPA enforcement unit to ensure compliance with the tighter environmental standards. ‘The combination of a new standard, a more accurate model and enhanced monitoring will allow the siting of farms in the most appropriate areas where the environment can assimilate wastes,’ said SEPA. ‘The new framework encourages operators to site and operate fish farms in environmentally less sensitive waters and use improved practices and technologies, such as containment, to reduce environmental impacts. ‘It may allow for the approval of larger farms than would have been traditionally approved previously, provided they are appropriately sited in sustainable locations.’ Farmers have long sought to expand the 2,500 tonne biomass limit on farms in Scottish waters so they can grow their businesses to meet demand. The new framework supports ‘encouraging developments’ by farmers who are successfully developing new approaches such as non-chemical ways of managing fish health. The controversial proposal to move to a feed limit rather than the current biomass limit to regulate the scale of impact from fish farms is still under consideration. SEPA said it will consult with all interested stakeholders on these options over the next three months before a final decision is made. In the interim, organic waste releases will continue to be limited using fish biomass. There are also plans to establish a new National Aquaculture Stakeholder Advisory Panel in what SEPA calls its new evidence based regulatory framework. During the consultation process, SEPA held nine community drop-in

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events, attended by 275 people, and 28 one to one meetings. Terry A’Hearn, chief executive of SEPA, said: ‘As one of a number of organisations regulating finfish aquaculture, SEPA is clear that our job is to make sure environmental standards protect the marine environment for the people of Scotland and we make sure the industry meets those standards. ‘Implementing our new firm, evidence based revised regulatory framework, which follows over 22 months of work, more science and more listening to stakeholders than ever before, is an important milestone. ‘It makes powerfully clear our aspirations and requirement that the industry reach and maintain full compliance with Scotland’s environmental protection laws, where SEPA will help those investing in innovation and moving beyond compliance. ‘It makes clear too our own commitment to more stringent science, modelling, monitoring, and unannounced inspections and to continuing to listen to communities, NGOs and industry through SEPA’s new National Aquaculture Stakeholder Advisory Panel.’

Above: Scottish salmon farm. Opposite: SEPA chief executive Terry A’Hearn


02/07/2019 11:50:48

News extra – Land based



King prawn farm in Stirlingshire to deliver without freezing or air miles



EFORE king prawns can be added to your paella or pad thai, they have typically travelled thousands of miles by sea or air from the Far East or Central America. Now, thanks to innovative green technology used in tourist aquariums, a pioneering firm is rearing the world’s most popular prawn variety in rural Stirlingshire, in the world’s first land based, clearwater king prawn farm. The company, branded Great British Prawns, says its new £2 million facility in the village of Balfron will begin harvesting the Pacific whiteleg shrimp (Litopenaeus vannamei) this summer. It aims to deliver the fresh crustaceans from tank to plate within 24 hours of harvesting, with no need for freezing or air miles, to restaurants within a two-hour radius of the 1,500m² farm. Chefs will be able to buy the locally grown prawns for £23 a kilo - a price similar to other shellfish such as Scottish langoustines. Normally native to the Eastern Pacific Ocean, the prawns at Balfron will be grown in more than 300 tonnes of water capable of holding up to a million prawns, which will grow to reach an average size of 25g each. Tank temperatures will be kept at a tropical 28 degrees Celsius. The farm has been established next door to a major dairy operation to take advantage of heat from its anaerobic digester, and is being touted as the model for a new kind of seafood production that uses renewable heat, innovative feedstocks and advanced filtration to pro-


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duce high-value warm water king prawns with minimal environmental impact. Its new recirculation aquaculture system (RAS) technology cleans and recycles the majority of the water in the system without contaminating the environment. The firm says its closed filtration system won’t require the antibiotics and other medication, chemicals and manual handling used widely in the existing prawn farming industry, resulting in uniquely ‘clean’, fresh prawns. Leading the venture is Douglas Allen, CEO of Great British Prawns. ‘We have to evolve the way we are farming, in all its forms,’ he told Fish Farmer. ‘We have to find a more intelligent way of producing food. ‘What we are trying to achieve is overdue. If we carry on as we are at the moment, I am not sure where our marine and riverine environments will all end up. My son says there are only 20 years’ worth of food left in the sea, and he is probably right.’

have “We to find a more intelligent way of producing food

02/07/2019 11:51:48

Clearwater revival

As evidence, the company’s announcement explained: ‘The UN’s Food and Agricultural Organisation states that global aquaculture needs to double in size over the next decade to keep pace with the ever rising demand for quality protein. ‘However, over fishing, the mismanagement of crucial feeding grounds and unsustainable farming methods are threatening the resilience of many fish stocks and the overall long-term supply of farmed fish to the global market.’ James McEuen, chairman and commercial director of Great British Prawns, added: ‘Most prawns have travelled 6,000 miles to reach a UK consumer with worldwide demand continuing to grow. ‘But we know that consumers are increasingly concerned about the environmental impact of seafood production and to be sustainable, the future of aquaculture really has to be land based.’

Above: Great British Prawns’ management team with Douglas Allen pictured second left. Above left: The Stirling site. Right: Checking water samples

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The idea came to the team via an unconventional route. ‘It is an odd journey into the industry,’ said Allen, who grew up on a Devon farm, and then chose a career as a soldier. When he left his Scottish regiment, he wondered: ‘Who was going to employ me as a former soldier? I needed to go back to school.’ His passion, he discovered, was the environment, so he studied for an undergraduate certificate in Sustainable Aquaculture at the University of St Andrews. He recalled: ‘It became absolutely clear to me, from an engineering perspective, we could take a role in the aquaculture industry from a sustainable angle. ‘Until now, there has been no Scottish produced king prawn. It has been imported. We are trying to stop this needless transportation around the world. ‘One of the exciting things is the technology of RAS. It is a closed, contained, circular process. We are doing our own thing, but based on the same principles. ‘We are trying to isolate a farming process, and decouple it from the environment, for the good of the environment.’ Dr Andrew Whiston, Great British Prawns’ technical director, said: ‘I’ve worked in aquaculture engineering for more than 25 years and this project is truly setting a worldwide precedent that will change the way prawns are farmed in the future. ‘Focusing on getting the RAS exactly right, along with mimicking the precise conditions required for optimal prawn development, has been a precision project that has required painstaking research and engineering. ‘The outcome is an approach that impresses on its engineering, as well as its sustainability and humane methods.’ Allen said the design capacity is 50 tonnes per annum, but he stopped short of revealing stocking densities. ‘We are able to harvest every week of the year. That enables us to meet the demand. The market for king prawns is immense. I am sure there is more than enough to keep us going in this country. We would like to expand within the island of the UK.’ WWF figures show that shrimp is the most valuable traded marine product in the world today. In 2005, farmed shrimp was a 10.6 billion dollar industry. Today, production is growing at an approximate rate of


02/07/2019 11:52:08

News extra – Land based

What we are trying to achieve is overdue

10 per cent annually—one of the highest growth rates in aquaculture. And according to ‘The global shrimp market reached a volume of around 4.66 million tonnes in 2018. ‘The global shrimp market is expected to reach a volume of 5.83 million tonnes by 2024, growing at a rate of 3.73 per cent (compound annual growth rate) during the forecast period (2019-2024).’ However, for now, Scotland is Great British Prawns’ principal market. ‘There is immense pride in national food,’ Allen said. Their emphasis, as their brand name suggests, is on home grown: prawns are born in the farm’s hatchery, and the team are developing their own technology, and sourcing equipment from this country where they can. ‘Other Great British Prawns farms are scheduled to open across the UK shortly,’ the company’s press release states, but, Allen told us, it is ‘very early days’ to detail any plans. ‘We only put a spade in the ground last September. We brought animals into the building in May.’ On future retail possibilities, he added: ‘The retail market demand a minimum volume. If we are successful, I would love to get a product into the mainstream.’ Getting the project off the ground has been ‘an intensely collective endeavour’, he said. Great British Prawns currently employs half a dozen farmers on site, and as many directors on its board. ‘We also have a very strong network of people helping us,’ he added: ‘It is this wider support that I cannot thank enough. ‘Starting up has been challenging. All the time we are doing something very new. It is a business establishing a new industry sector, in a country that has only recently seen this sort of thing before. ‘There has always been a challenge in the upfront costs of starting up. They are essential for the benefit of the environment.


Prawns.indd 24

‘What are the costs of a traditional farm to the environment? They are costs we must avoid our children from having to bear, so we are trying to do this now.’ Prawn venture’s origins: Martin Jaffa FF

Above: The facility has been stocked since May Below: Farm manager Abbie Chulin

02/07/2019 11:52:39

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02/07/2019 11:56:31



From fish to shrimp New venture’s origins were in farming salmon on land


ARM water prawns are big business. They are some of the most popular seafood available in the UK. They are sold either raw, cooked, shell on or peeled. They can also be organic. Some are sold marinated in a choice of flavours. These large prawns have taken over in popularity from locally caught North Atlantic cold water prawns. It is therefore not surprising to hear that a new company has been established to grow warm water prawns in the UK. Great British Prawns has set up what is claimed to be the world’s first land based king prawn farm. I am not sure how true that claim is because I remember visiting a land based king prawn farm in Hawaii in the late 1980s. That farm eventually failed because the stocking densities required to make it pay resulted in repeated disease outbreaks. This latest venture uses new recirculation technology developed for commercial tourist aquaria and thus they may have solved the problems experienced by previous ventures. The company is about to harvest its first crop of king prawns, which they intend to restrict to restaurants within a two-hour radius of their base in Balfron, Stirlingshire. They plan to sell the prawns to chefs for £23/kg. For comparison. Waitrose organic king prawns sell for £33.27/kg retail. These are farmed in Ecuador. The hope of those developing this farm is that it will avoid the alleged environmental impact of mainstream aquaculture, as well as avoiding the need for freezing or accumulating unnecessary air miles.


Martin Jaffa.indd 26

However, the question for chefs will be whether they are happy to pay more for such prawns or whether the quoted price is due to freshness and taste. I wait to hear which chefs are using these prawns so I can go and taste them (unless Great British Prawns have some sample available). Unfortunately, I am based outside their proposed delivery zone. The decision to impose this zone is puzzling. Is this to restrict demand and hence production or because they want to ensure total freshness? If this is the case, then why locate in rural Stirlingshire and not in the middle of Scotland’s urban heartland, where there are many more potential buyers? After all, a closed, salt water recirculating system could be located anywhere, and not miles from the sea in the Scottish countryside. I am reminded of another venture which grew tilapia in heated water in the UK. The concept was to reduce air miles and to offer a much fresher product than otherwise available. While demand for tilapia is not the same as for prawns, the market actually preferred the imported fish to those grown locally. The taste was not considered the same. The fish were also sold through Tesco fish counters, but they had an eight-day shelf life, which seems to somewhat undermine the freshness aspect of locally grown fish. Despite a number of unanswered questions, the most interesting aspect of the Great British Prawns venture is its origins. This prawn farm began life as the proposed recirculating farming company for salmon, FishFrom. The intention was to build a large, tank based salmon farming venture at Tayinloan to produce ethically reared fish. Despite assurances that retailers were willing to buy every fish they could produce, FishFrom

02/07/2019 11:57:40

From fish to shrimp

FishFrom was established by “ people from the wild fish sector to

demonstrate that closed containment was the way forward

Top: King prawns Above: Coldwater prawns Opposite: Tilapia

failed to raise the necessary capital from their investors and hence the project never got off the ground. The company then reported that they were to establish a small research unit on the east coast, but this also failed to appear. After a number of years of inactivity, the company name was changed from FishFrom to Great British Prawns on February 5, 2018. Within a week, Andrew Robertson, who had been running FishFrom, terminated his association with the company. FishFrom was established by people from the wild fish sector with the intention of setting up a closed containment farm to demonstrate to the salmon farming industry that closed containment was the way forward. They may have believed that land based was the best option for salmon farming; however, they were unable to convince the salmon angling fraternity that this would be a good investment so failed to raise the money. They even managed to get coverage on TV news with an announcement that work was to start at the site at Tayinloan. Apparently, work stopped as soon as the cameras disappeared. FishFrom was never a viable option from the outset as it was motivated by the desire to protect wild fish rather than being a commercial success. I can only hope that the new incarnation of this company has a better financial standing with customers who want a fresh and tasty prawn at the right price. FF

Martin Jaffa.indd 27

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02/07/2019 11:58:00

Shellfish - Oyster restoration


What works, what

doesn’t and why

Edinburgh meeting hears about different approaches, with different aims, across Europe


HE first meeting to establish the Native Oyster Restoration Alliance (NORA), held in Berlin in 2017, was centred on preparing a statement of intent after many years of diligent preparation. The 69 people gathered for NORA 1 discussed what the aims of the alliance were to be and how these were to be pursued. Meeting 18 months later in Edinburgh was quite a different proposition. For one thing, the number of delegates had more than doubled and were limited mainly by the capacity of the Royal Society of Edinburgh to accommodate 155 people. This meeting, however, centred on what was happening and there was a great deal of work to report on. The conference was generously sponsored by the Glenmorangie Company with support from Scottish Natural Heritage, the Marine Conservation Society and Heriot Watt University. The Dornoch Environmental Enhancement Project (DEEP), which is funded by Glenmorangie, was much in evidence, with all the student helpers

wearing their distinctive DEEP T-shirts and doing a great job. This culminated in providing potted histories of the oysters and oyster wars on the Firth of Forth, delivered in what could only be described as bracing conditions on the windswept shores of the Firth. But that was the field trip at the end of the conference – there was a lot of work for them before that. After Mairi Gougeon, Minister for Rural Affairs and Natural Environment, opened the meeting, there was a full programme of talks on the various projects underway, many illustrating different approaches being made in the very different conditions across Europe in which restoration is Left: Windswept shores of the Firth of Forth Opposite: Participants at NORA 2 were entertained at the National Museum of Scotland, hosted by the Glenmorangie Company (Photos: Janet H Brown)


Shellfish.indd 28

02/07/2019 11:59:51

What works, what doesn’t and why

being attempted. Diverse sessions were grouped together and presented under headings such as ‘What works, what doesn’t and why’, for inshore projects in one session and for offshore in the next. It is early days to answer these questions, but undoubtedly different approaches are being made and with different aims. For one example, Project RESTORE aims to re-establish deep reefs in German waters where the native oyster has been declared extinct. A film, Hope for the European Flat Oyster (available on the NORA website ( restoration-projects/germany-restore-oyster-restoration-project/) presents the aims of this and even shows something of what the end point, with dramatically enriched biodiversity, might look like. A UK based project aims for restoration, including an oyster fishery such as the ENORI project (Essex Native Oyster restoration Initiative). Other sessions were on ‘Biosecurity and Management’ and ‘What does success look like and how do we get there?’ The final, parallel, sessions were on ‘Ecosystem services- unlocking business models for restoration’; and ‘Future proofing: challenges and solutions’; and a third session dealt with industry matters. In another lucky trick of timing (or of excellent management), a paper on the NORA agreement was published coinciding with the conference.

Shellfish.indd 29

It was revealed that bottom trawling was to be “excluded from the Borkum Reef area of the North Sea – trawling and reef structure cannot co-exist ”

This gives a summary of all projects currently in progress that are signed up to work along the lines NORA has agreed. This is available at https://doi. org/10.1051/alr/2019012 from Aquatic Living Resources. There was good news presented at the beginning of the conference by Henning von Nordheim (German Federal Agency for Nature Conservation (BfN)) who was able to announce that funding for a further two years for the secretariat of NORA had been obtained by BfN. And also, perhaps of even greater import, it was revealed that bottom trawling was to be excluded from the Borkum Reef area of the North Sea within the next few months; this means a great deal for the potential success of the RESTORE project. Trawling and reef structure cannot co-exist. At the end of the meeting, Henning announced further good news in that Philine zu Ermgassen had been appointed secretary to NORA. She will shortly take up the post, which is based in Berlin. The prize for the best poster was awarded to Dr Anaëlle Lemasson (University of Cambridge), the prize being a fine bottle of Glenmorangie whisky. There followed similarly generous presentations to the scientific committee who had chaired the sessions and helped in the organisation. Happily and deservingly, an extra special bottle of Glenmorangie was given in the final presentation to Henning von Nordheim in recognition of his role in preparing so much of the preliminary work, his far-sightedness in establishing NORA, and his ongoing work in the field of oyster restoration and the essential background work on policy and legislation he has carried out over the years. FF


02/07/2019 12:00:08

Shellfish - Oyster restoration

Straight from the coal face – student updates on larvae settlement, mini-reefs, carbon budgets and much more I WAS most fortunate in being able to attend the PhD student mini-symposium held before the start of the full NORA conference, writes Janet Brown. This was like hearing the news straight from the coal face: the work actually in progress to various degrees. Some projects were just starting out while others were almost completed, with PhD theses written and papers published. Some presentations also provided a nice practice opportunity before presenting in front of the far larger audience at the main event, but the small scale of this symposium made it particularly useful. Ana Rodriguez (Heriot Watt/St Andrews) started off with a brief but succinct account of her work with oyster larvae and their settlement preferences, which are largely determined by the presence of another oyster and also biofilm. Ana had also done detailed work on the behaviour of the larvae, which show a pattern of seeking the bottom - hence another example of planktonic larvae exhibiting behaviour that prevents it being distributed far and wide but instead showing behaviour that will tend to favour its staying near its parental stock. Hannah Lee (Heriot Watt University) introduced a novel study on a carbon budget for oysters that could be akin to the green budget worked out for the Amazon, but in the case of oysters, blue carbon. It is very early days in her study and she also presented in the main conference, arguing that a disproportionate amount of attention is given

to photosynthetic marine ecosystems. Her work aims to improve understanding of service provision in terms of carbon storage and water quality management. Bérenger Colsoul (Alfred Wegener Institute (AWI) discussed ‘From hard rocks to PROCEED’, reporting on what he had studied in his PhD, which focused on suitable substrate material for settlement of young oyster spat. The title referred to this topic and what it is leading on to, which is a second phase of the RESTORE project. This continues from this year in two parts, one of which is called PROCEED, centred on production of spat on substrate. (This includes the establishment of a hatchery on Helgoland, an island off the German coast.) Verena Merk (AWI) presented some information that was truly amazing. I had always assumed reefs could only form if there is natural settlement. When checking on the growth of her oysters put out at 10m and 25m depth, she found that not only did they grow very well but they had

I had “always

assumed reefs could only form if there is natural settlement


Shellfish.indd 30

02/07/2019 12:00:31

What works, what doesn’t and why

Clockwise from above: The

speakers at the PhD mini-symposium crowd around a statue of David Hume at the Royal Society of Edinburgh, an inspiring location for their talks. From left to right, Ana Rodriguez, Verena Merk, Maria HaydenHughes, Hannah Lee, Zoë Holbrook, Brecht Stechele, Luke Helmer, Brecht Stechele (University of Ghent) was another student with a mathactually formed mini-reefs by becoming fasAlice Lown, Eric Harrisematical bent, modelling to determine where oysters can thrive. tened to each other by the growth of epifauna. Scott and Bérenger The modelling takes into account the food required for growth, the exShe also found that her oysters were already Colsoul; cess that is needed for reproduction, and the temperature that gets the producing larvae. This is information from oysIain Ross of Maorach best assimilation; with optimum conditions it can take Ostrea edulis 80 ters placed out the same year. Beag, in background, days to reach puberty but it takes 160 days in the less optimal conditions Maria Hayden-Hughes of the newly estabDavid Shearer of lished Shellfish Centre, at the University of Ban- in Belgium. Lochnell Oysters He is looking for collaborators to provide data that can go on to the gor, has been looking into the historic position and (on right)Alex of oysters in Wales. She is now seeking to revive Add-My-Pet website ( Mackenzie; pet/), a site that aims to collect referenced data on the energetics of beds around Puffin Island, working with the Bill Sanderson (Heriot animal species. hand dredged mussels growers. This project is Watt) and Henning Zoë Holbrook (University of Southampton) talked about comparing still at a very early stage. von Nordheim three populations of O. edulis and comparing hatchery production versus Alice Lown (University of Essex), at the other with a previous oyster wild populations. end of a PhD programme and about to start inhabitant of the Firth; But since changes can be marked on even a very local scale, the work is a two-year post-doc, had been looking at the Kelsey Thompson richness of macrofaunal species with density of complicated, expensive and the need for biosecurity is extreme. of Morecambe Bay Luke Helmer (University of Portsmouth), who had organised this session oysters. Oysters with Hazel and chaired it admirably, talked of his work on suspended broodstock This showed clear increasing species richness Allen with increasing density, but this gets suppressed cages. Crepidula also came into his talk, with a figure of 4,034 Crepidula per in areas with high densities of the slipper limpet, cubic metre recorded at the mouth of Chichester harbour. Crepidula fornicata.

Shellfish.indd 31


02/07/2019 12:00:50

Trade Associations – Scottish Salmon Producers’ Organisation


Badge of success Tracking the global traders who try to cash in on the hard work of our producers


ANDERING around the Boston Seafood Expo this year, it was easy to find the stall run by Spence & Co, an American fish smoking company. But the Spence & Co stand would not have seemed out of place had it been shunted several rows and been placed right in the middle of the Scottish pavilion, such was the prevalence of tartan on its packaging. Spence & Co prides itself on its ‘Scottish style’ smoked salmon and it doesn’t just rely on tartan. Dominating its website is a huge picture of Eilean Donan Castle – that most photographed of structures on the Kyle of Lochalsh. Much of the packaging also features a stylised image of a bonneted Scottish ghillie and a boy with a fishing rod. The company never actually says it sells Scottish salmon but it does appear to do everything it can to ride along on the coat tails of what is clearly the recognised market leader, at least in terms of quality. Describing its ‘traditional smoked salmon’, the Spence & Co website declares: ‘The succulent, mild flavour is distinctly Scottish. Butter soft and subtly smoky, the taste will carry you to the traditional Scottish smokehouse.’ Now, nothing Spence & Co is doing is wrong legally. It never claims to actually use Scottish salmon but it gives the impression that its salmon is almost identical to the real thing. It is capitalising on the success of Scottish salmon and while it could be

seen to be a little cheeky in promoting what appear to be non-Scottish products with blatant Scottish overtones, it is perfectly entitled to do so. There are other fish packagers and retailers around the world, though, who are less scrupulous and who will quite happily badge salmon as Scottish even though they know it is not. This is a problem the industry knows about and is keen to address, but also knows quite what a difficult task that is. The Scotch whisky industry has had considerable success chasing down fake Scotch producers all over the world, but it has spent many years and many millions of pounds doing so. The Scottish salmon sector doesn’t have the resources, in any sense, to copy whisky. Also, it is a much more difficult proposition to chase down fraudulent fish sellers than spirit manufacturers. For example, if a fish farmer in Scotland is using the same feed as a competitor in Ireland, how does anyone prove that one fish came from Scotland and another from the Emerald Isle? It can be done, but it is a very difficult and expensive process. Block chain – which uses digital technology to track products on every transaction from farm to restaurant – is likely to provide a partial answer, and some salmon producers are looking

Imitation may be the sincerest form of flattery but we would be even more flattered if they just bought the original product 32

SSPO - Hamish.indd 32

02/07/2019 12:44:15

Badge of success

very closely at it. But while block chain will track the exact provenance and detailed destination of any consignment, it is not clear yet how it will trace the actual flesh of the fish which ends up on a consumer’s plate. It is perhaps one of the ironies of the success of Scottish salmon that, as its reputation for quality grows, so it spawns imitators who threaten the quality which has brought that success in the first place. This is something Food Standards Scotland is aware of and an issue Seafood Scotland and the Scottish Salmon Producers’ Organisation are actively looking into. The first, and most immediate, problem is identifying the culprits: those people trying to pass off fish as Scottish that clearly is not. This is where Scotland’s global in-market specialists are coming into their own. These trade experts have been placed in key markets for food and drink all over the world. The SSPO is one of a number of bodies to have helped sponsor the employment of these peo-

SSPO - Hamish.indd 33

ple, whose job it is to promote Scottish food and drink exports. In the five years they have been in place, they have been hugely successful, boosting Scottish food and drink exports by £67 million. These in-market specialists come back to Scotland in June every year, to catch up on developments here, to talk to the sponsor organisations and make sure they are aware of all developments in markets and strategies. Their insight is extremely valuable: one of the revelations at this year’s event was a forecast of just how much further the Chinese market could grow because of the continuing distrust among the burgeoning middle class towards the local Chinese food table. A succession of food scandals had put so many people off eating locally sourced food, they snapped up anything the west could put on their plates, particularly salmon. But the in-market specialists can also function as our eyes and ears, everywhere from Hong Kong to California, watching for those trying to cash in on the hard work our producers have done to make Scottish salmon so sought after. This is what the SSPO is now doing: liaising with our own trade experts so that any traders trying to pass off salmon from other parts of the world as Scottish are identified and monitored. They say imitation is the sincerest form of flattery. It may be flattering that others want to cash in on our success by claiming to be something they aren’t – but we would be even more flattered if they just bought the original product. FF

Opposite: A smoked seafood product from Spence & Co. Above: Scottish salmon farm


02/07/2019 12:44:39

News extra – Wild salmon

New rules for


But each case will be considered on its own merits, Marine Scotland promises


ISHERY managers hope that proposed changes to restocking wild salmon in Scottish rivers will not affect the programmes currently in place. The changes in stocking policy, put forward by Marine Scotland, address what the government body considers risks or ‘negative effects’ on wild salmon populations, which are declining in rivers on the east and west coasts of Scotland. Marine Scotland said: ‘Whilst the stocking of wild Atlantic salmon, either as fertilised eggs or juvenile fish, is a legitimate fisheries management technique in some circumstances, evidence suggests that there are only a limited number of situations where hatchery and stocking strategies may benefit individual populations. ‘Increasingly, scientific studies are concluding that there are risks of negative effects of stocking wild Atlantic salmon. ‘These risks may be through short term effects, such as attracting higher numbers of predators or increasing competition among the fish such that the population is reduced from where it would have been without stocking.’ Marine Scotland added: ‘Risks may also be longer term through reduction of the strength and resilience of natural populations by interfering with the genetic constitution. ‘This process of introducing mal-adapted genes, termed introgression, can be particularly insidious if the stocked fish are not local to the area where they will be introduced. ‘The risk also increases with the time that the stock is held in a hatchery because of selection for characteristics that are suitable in a rearing environment but maladapted for the wild. ‘A consequence of the need to use locally adapted stock is that the process of removing broodstock can itself also weaken the wild population and must be assessed as a hazard.’ Although the proposed changes would seem to rule out some of the existing – and highly successful - restocking programmes on the west coast, Marine Scotland does say each case will be considered on its merits. Jon Gibb, manager of the Drimsallie wild salmon hatchery and live gene bank in Glenfinnan, said: ‘We were consulted prior to the publi-


Restocking.indd 34

cation of this policy and discussed at length with Marine Scotland the critical state of some individual salmon stocks and some of our strategies to attempt to counteract this decline. ‘It was agreed that, while this policy aims to eradicate poorly thought out stocking practices and programmes based on a poor evidence base, each scenario will be judged on a case by case basis. ‘It may be, for example, that if a stock is verging on extinction then a more interventionist response than suggested by the headline points in this stocking policy might be appropriate.’ Gibb, who has run restocking programmes on the River Lochy and beyond for almost 20 years – often alongside local salmon farmers – added: ‘It seems non-sensical to be limiting one of the responses available to fishery managers at a time when stocks are in freefall. ‘Well run hatcheries can and still do, in certain unique circumstances, play a vital role in the rehabilitation of seriously threatened stocks of wild Atlantic salmon.’ Marine Scotland said: ‘Given the wide range of potential objectives of broodstock collection, hatchery and stocking strategies, it is neither possible nor sensible to be prescriptive for the many situations in which licensing applications may be received.’ The proposals, as outlined by Marine Scotland, are as follows: Although Marine Scotland will consider1 each case on its individual merits, a general assessment of risks has resulted in the following principles, which will govern assessments of applications: 1. A presumption in favour of introductions for mitigation, subject to provisions. We define mitigation as stocking where salmon populations would be significantly impacted2 without such intervention, because other options to mitigate sufficiently the impact of human activity are undeliverable. This type of stocking is typically pursued, for example, to reduce the impact of man-made barriers which may prevent or substantially disrupt upstream and/or downstream migration. A presumption in favour of introductions for mitigation is established when all of the following provisions are in place: • The hatchery facility is suitably registered with Marine Scotland Fish Health Inspectorate and the operator holds an appropriate CAR authorisation from SEPA; • Broodstock3 normally represents no more than two per cent of estimated adult returners for the associated assessed area; • Where there is substantial risk of presence of escaped farmed fish, the broodstock are genetically screened to ensure no introgression;

Opposite: Mowi’s fish health team assess wild caught smolts at the Drimsallie hatchery last month. (Photo: Jon Gibb)

It seems non-sensical to be limiting one of the “responses available to fishery managers at a time when stocks are in freefall ”

02/07/2019 12:03:28

New rules for restocking

Restocking.indd 35


02/07/2019 12:04:00

News extra – Wild salmon

Salmon survival scheme ahead of schedule • Sufficient broodstock are available to maintain the high levels of genetic variability which are needed to avoid ‘inbreeding’ effects; • Introductions have wild origin parents and are first generation progeny; • Introductions are of local origin wild Atlantic salmon from the same river and in the case of large rivers, from the same sub-catchment; • Introductions are within the native range of wild Atlantic salmon4, as defined by Scottish Natural Heritage (SNH); • Introductions are of ova and/or unfed fry5; • There is a monitoring plan to measure the outcomes of the stocking operation; • In Special Areas of Conservation (SACs) applicants should provide an impact assessment of the licensable activity, including sufficient supporting information to allow a Habitat Regulation Assessment (HRA) to be carried out and if required an appropriate assessment. consultation with SNH should take place prior to licence application. The information provided must include both the impact on Atlantic salmon and on those other conservation features which depend upon them (such as freshwater pearl mussel); and • Licensing will continue beyond an initial trial period only if the monitoring indicates that the operation is successful. Requirements for additional monitoring may be stipulated, with appropriate reason, at any time. 2. A neutral presumption in respect of introductions for restoration and/or scientific research. We define restoration as stocking to encourage and accelerate the return of a local Atlantic salmon population towards a previous state in water bodies assessed as significantly impacted6 due to human activity which has now been successfully mitigated or completely resolved. Such activity would be licensed only if necessary and appropriate in consideration of any associated risks. We define scientific stocking as activities which are intended to improve understanding of Atlantic salmon population processes, productivity or the efficacy of management actions, where there is a need to generate spatially homogenous salmon abundances or work from known starting stock and/or densities. Such licences would normally be granted for work covered by appropriate Home Office Scientific licences under animal welfare legislation. Licences may not be granted if any associated risks to wild salmon populations are too high. A neutral presumption in respect of introductions for restoration and/ or scientific research is based on the above mitigation principles and, in addition, that the introductions are time limited, with a presumption that they will be for no more than four years, subject to review. 3. A presumption against all other forms of stocking. FF

We will fully evaluate the risks and benefits as advised in NASCO’s Guidelines for incorporating social and economic factors in decisions under the Precautionary Approach ( 2 ‘Significantly impacted’ means where there is a risk of an environmental standard being breached. The standards are set out in scotland-river-basin-district-standards-directions-2014/ 3 ‘Broodstock’ means a group of mature wild Atlantic salmon used for breeding purposes. 4 The areas of a river catchment to which Atlantic salmon have had no historic natural access are outwith its native range. 5 This guidance does not refer to the trapping and trucking of smolts nor wild Atlantic salmon rescue. 6 ‘Significantly impacted’ means where there is a risk of an environmental standard being breached.

A NEW wild salmon restoration trial pioneered by the River Lochy fishery and Mowi Scotland took a step forward in June – two months ahead of schedule. As part of the indigenous Lochy smolt to adult supplementation programme, the fish health team at Mowi visited the Drimsallie hatchery, near Glenfinnan, to test the seawater readiness of wild caught smolts prior to transfer to sea pens. Jon Gibb, fishery manager of the Lochy, launched the project earlier this year, taking around 500 wild migrating smolts and growing them in the hatchery. The smolts will be transferred to a dedicated pen at Mowi’s Ardnish site at Lochailort and raised alongside the farmed fish there. The intention had been to transfer the fish at 500g in September, but Gibb said they were due to be moved last monh, to get the maximum benefit of the sea growth. The 500 salmon –

there have been no losses – are currently between 60-100g, which is big for wild smolts, so they are getting a ‘head start’, he said. Once they are in the pen, and have reached an appropriate size, wrasse will be added. The salmon will then be released as adults in autumn 2020 to procreate naturally in the wild. The salmon farmers carried out ATPAse tests to assess the stock’s readiness for transfer to Lochailort, with samples sent to Norway, using the new Pharmaq SmoltVision tool. ‘The professionalism of the Mowi fish health team is unbelievable,’ said Gibb. ‘The meticulous nature they’re treating this project, I’m really impressed.’ Gibb, who has managed restoration schemes for nearly 20 years, said this new programme is a first for Scotland. Up to 99 per cent of wild smolts are not returning to rivers to spawn, and Gibb said using fish that will die anyway and putting

them back in the river is ‘a very natural way’ of restocking. Using Mowi’s sea pens will get faster growth than Gibb can achieve in Drimsallie, a freshwater hatchery. Past schemes have involved fry production, using indigenous broodstock and releasing their fry at first feeding. Another project, currently underway at Drimsallie, takes smolt from several rivers and grows them into adult salmon in tanks. These are then stripped and when the eggs are eyed ova they are placed into artificial redds in the river tributaries. The latest approach, however, stocks the river with adult salmon. ‘We’re still treating this very much as a trial, we don’t know what the fish are going to do,’ said Gibb. ‘We have plenty of reason to believe they will cut redds and do what fish are supposed to do at that time of year but of course we don’t know. But it’s all going to plan.’



Restocking.indd 36

Above: Jon Gibb

02/07/2019 12:04:28



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392014 02/07/2019 12:12:51

Aquaculture’s Global Outlook – Conference

Reaching out How the UK spreads its aquaculture knowledge and training around the world


HE world is not equal when it comes to aquaculture, with production dominated by China, but the UK has long had a global role in the sector’s development. This was the message from Professor David Little to a conference, Aquaculture’s Global Outlook: Embracing Internationality, held in Edinburgh on May 29. Little, from Stirling’s Institute of Aquaculture, spoke about the British tradition of exporting aquaculture expertise, going back to the industry’s beginnings. In a talk titled ‘Reaching Out: International Collaboration and Cooperation for UK Aquaculture’, he highlighted some of the ways UK based scientists have taken their training and invested it in developing countries. ‘This is a really important part of what Stirling has done over the years…it has brought together partners from around the UK and more globally. ‘Looking back over 40 to 50 years, what makes Brits travel?’ asked Little. ‘Is it a lack of opportunities at home in a relatively slow growing sector? Or is it the range of exciting opportunities or other motives? Is it an altruistic thing?’ He said his own career began in the VSO but rather than being altruistic, he needed a job


Seminar.indd 38

Below: Nicki Holmyard addresses delegates at the afternoon conference. Opposite: Professor Little (top); Rural Economy minister Fergus Ewing (top right), who opened the event; delegates; speakers Kolbjorn Giskeodegard of Nordea, Melanie Siggs of the GAA, and Patrick Blow of M&S take part in a panel discussion

and it got him on the path he’s on now. ‘Part of the attraction is that fish is food- is there a special role for aquaculture in terms of poverty alleviation? ‘People go overseas increasingly with research opportunities, as the world gets ever more networked, or with commercial incentives.’ The IoA has been working around the globe since it was established in 1980, and the value and focus of the Institute has always been outward looking, said Little. ‘We have worked in over 50 countries and have trained many students and that presence and international networking is so important.’ But what effect has this global approach had? At the dawn of Scottish salmon in the early 1980s the Institute was invested in a tropical species, tilapia. The Overseas Development Administration (now DFID) invested in positions in Stirling that could start training and researching around tilapias. British scientist Dr Roger Pullin led the research into developing better strains of tilapia, which have been a key part of the farmed species’ success over the last 20 years. ‘It was his vision, together with Norwegian investment, that made the GIFT programme of genetically improved tilapias a reality in the mid1980s, with the whole idea of setting up strains that could be bred and selected on in each of the countries where tilapia was important.’ There were also private streams of investment in genetic improvement in tilapia, with CDC being one of the British institutions that supported tilapias as a business early on. Little mentioned Patrick Blow, a fellow speaker at the conference, now representing M&S, as a pioneer in aquaculture development in Africa. ‘Lake Harvest, which Patrick Blow ran for 20 years, was a reality of modern farming in the middle of Africa, originally selling into the UK but now selling in African markets, because African markets are growing so fast. ‘That hasn’t stopped. African aquaculture is seen as slow growing –and it is compared to Asia – but there are great signs of what’s happening there.’ Little said companies such as Tropo Farms on Lake Volta in Ghana, aiming to produce 10,000 tonnes of tilapia, and Victory Farms in Kenya, had been financed to some extent by UK investors. He saw this as part of an extended network, involving UK people who have taken their training and invested it in developing countries. This was an important part of what Stirling has done over the years. Also, World Fish and FAO have people who got their training in the UK and now are out in the wider world applying that training. And Imani, the development consultancy based in Oban, but heavily invested in Africa, works all over the world, supporting aquaculture development, usually with a business tinge. ‘Modern research isn’t just technical. It’s about engagement in value chains, it’s about the multiple commercial and public sector partners that are now required to do research almost anywhere. ‘It tends to be ever more inter-disciplinary and inter-cultural. And they

02/07/2019 12:15:37

Reaching out

all want impact – why train someone, why do research unless there is some form of impact?’ Little said networks like SARNISSA (Sustainable Aquaculture Research Networks in Sub-Saharan Africa), set up by the IoA, demonstrate the role the UK has in international development and spreading aquaculture knowledge. ‘We can take what we’ve learned from the salmon sector, our understanding of carrying capacity modelling, and trying to apply it there in partnership with local institutions. ‘We talk about sustainable intensification – how can we get more from less while looking after the environment, while looking after fish welfare, while looking after the general economy?’ He said aquaculture also has a strategic and a political value, in countries such as Egypt, the second biggest producer of Nile tilapia in the world. The Arab Spring uprising that began in 2010 was partly about food security, said Little – ‘if those people don’t get not just food but quality food we’re going to see a lot more of this.’ ‘That’s why we shouldn’t just think technical – when we help tilapia farmers fight diseases and develop improved systems, it’s more than just putting food on the table, it has a bigger perspective.’ Development and impact happens through multiple channels, not just through university training, with companies like Lloyd’s Register moving into aquaculture insurance, and the Fish Vet Group operating on a global scale. The UK provides a global service, with many people engaged in increasing farmed production globally, to make people in Malaysia, in China and Africa want to have products produced to a higher standard, both environmentally and socially. ‘How do we make sure a huge number of small producers stay in this game? As a sector, we have to start thinking food rather than just fish. ‘If you look at the number of papers that mention food security, only a tiny fraction mention seafood of any type. That is not where we want to be. ‘We want to be central to the food systems debate in the coming years,

Seminar.indd 39

and we want to be able to connect the blue economy to sustainable nutrition. ‘We can’t have impact without coming together. We [at Stirling] have started a seafood consumption initiative – we think we can learn from other countries about consumption, they eat a lot more seafood than we do. ‘We’ve got to connect, we’ve got to engage and we’ve got to invest to continue to have the international outlook that the UK already has.’ Aquaculture’s Global Outlook: Embracing Internationality, in Dynamic Earth, Edinburgh, on May 29, was organised by 5m Publishing. FF

We can take what we’ve learnt from the salmon sector and try to apply it in partnership with local institutions


02/07/2019 12:15:55

Aquaculture’s Global Outlook – Conference

Africa: engaging with the world’s next aquaculture superpower?

Above: Clifford Spencer shared the platform with Philip Leigh of the University of Hull

AFRICA is really starting to get its act together, said Clifford Spencer, goodwill ambassador to the newly formed African Union Development Agency (AUDA).

The continent is moving from aid funding towards more internal aid and there is a drive to grow more internally. Africa has historically been an export continent, with colonial powers taking resources out, said Spencer. It exports high value species and imports cheaper food fish to meet food and nutrition needs; and between 2007 and 2016, fish imports grew by 133 per cent and exports by 42 per cent. But the drive now, under the 50-year Agenda 2063 programme, is to get trading between African nations. The target is to remove tariff barriers between countries and there are only three out of 55 nations in Africa that have not yet signed up. Spencer highlighted some of the challenges Africa faces in developing its aquaculture industry. The continent has a population of 1.2 billion but 600 million Africans have no direct access to electricity. Without energy, aquaculture simply doesn’t work. Africa will have an estimated population of 2.5 billion in 2050, and unless things change, more than 40 per cent of food will have to be imported – despite the resources on the continent. The challenges are mighty, but they can be met if all the different departments (including UK institutions such as Stirling University) and the infrastructure are put together. In 2016, African aquaculture contributed 18 per cent of Africa’s fish production, valued USD3.5 billion. The percentage increase in production between 2007 and 2010 globally was 60 per cent, while in Africa it was 142 per cent. In 2015, North African aquaculture contributed 62 per cent of Africa’s aquaculture production, principally with tilapia farming. ‘This shows that in one country of the 55 things can be done well and very rapidly. There is no real reason why it can’t happen,’ said Spencer. But, often, development means taking one step forward and two steps back. In the central parts of Africa, aquaculture is basically small holder, ‘feed the family’ units. And in examples of misunderstandings, people are putting huge hydro projects and dams into lakes, not realising these interfere with fish production cycles. ‘There need to be structural things for aquaculture to be successful – making sure there are roads and transport systems to deliver the fish,’ said Spencer. The last few years have shown there is a willingness to address the challenges and African leaders are engaged.

Market big enough to absorb even a ‘fantastic breakthrough’ in land based salmon farming TRADITIONAL salmon farmers should not be worried about the impact of new land based farms on their businesses, said Kolbjorn Giskeodegard, a senior seafood analyst at Nordea Bank. ‘There is enough market for everyone, as I see it, and there are only opportunities,’ he reassured industry delegates in his talk, ‘The economic outlook for salmon aquaculture’. Since 2010, supply has gone up one million tonnes (67 per cent), and at the same time prices have gone up 30 per cent (in euros, thus eliminating the factor of a weak NOK). ‘It has been a fantastic period. People talking about land based salmon farms in North America or in central Europe or in Asia say, ‘oh it’s going to be devastating for the industry’. There are plans for 800,000 tonnes of salmon production in land based RAS, ‘most of which will never see the light of day’, said Giskeodegard. However, Atlantic Sapphire’s project in Florida now has fish swimming around and they are targeting 200,000 tonnes in the most recent update. ‘Time will show whether that will be a success. If the land based industry managed to come up with between 100,000 to 300,000 tonnes in the next 10 years it would be a fantastic success. ‘Meanwhile, we have grown one million tonnes in just nine years and one


Seminar.indd 40

million tonnes from now is a little below 40 per cent.’ If the market has been able to absorb 70 per cent more salmon in under a decade, any future growth from RAS farms will be absorbed too. ‘And if land based farming should be the new standard- let’s say there is a fantastic breakthrough and massive production everywhere in the world- for those who are worried about their sea farms I am convinced there will always be a market.’ There will always be people who demand the original salmon from the clear, cold waters of Scotland, of Shetland, the Orkneys, and Norway, and are prepared to pay for it. Supply growth is currently stable at around 6.5 per cent, and Giskeodegard forecast that there would be ‘no big supply shocks… but in this industry you never know, something always pops up’. Supply would be driven by optimisation of the current technology which is open pens in the water, ‘not so much land based, not so much ocean farming’. ‘There are a limited number of licences available in the world for traditional farming. Most licences in the salmon producing countries are fully utilised. ‘So it’s a question of optimising and there is a process going on in Norway, the Faroes, Scotland, trying to expand the period with fish on land.’ With the optimisation of feed, genetics, and so on, fish farmers have man-

02/07/2019 12:16:17

Reaching out

Tour de fish

Round-up of what we farm and where

THERE are currently 598 species farmed around the world, seafood writer Nicki Holmyard told delegates at the conference. In a talk titled ‘Bass to basa, snakehead to salmon: a tour of global aquaculture species’, Holmyard said the number of aquaculture species had increased by 26.7 per cent in the past 10 years, according to FAO figures. This growth is attributed to both an improvement in the FAO’s efforts to find out what people are growing around the world but also to an improvement in data reporting. The latest data shows aquaculture is now responsible for 53 per cent of global seafood production compared to the wild catch – although the figure takes into account aquaculture products that go into fishmeal and so on, so the ratio is probably about 50/50, but is likely to grow, said Holmyard. Of the farmed output, there are 369 fish species; 64 crustacean species; 109 molluscs; 40 seaweeds and microalgae; and 16 aquatic animals (turtles, sea cucumbers). The total volume is 110.2 million tonnes, with China accounting for 62 per cent, and the first sale value is $243.5 billion. In a breakdown of farmed product for consumption, there are 54.1 million tonnes of finfish (worth $138.5 billion); 17.1 million tonnes ($29.2 billion) of molluscs; 7.9 million tonnes ($57.1 billion) of crustaceans; and 938,500 tonnes ($6.8 billion) of aquatic animals. The world grows carp (52 per cent); tilapia (10 per cent); Atlantic salmon (four per cent); pangasius (three per cent); milkfish (two per cent); snakehead (two per cent); rainbow trout (two per cent); with the rest making up 22 per cent. Holmyard, who has a family mussel farming business, Offshore Mussels, in Devon, said shrimp (vannamei) account for more than half (52 per cent) of the crustaceans farmed, followed by red swamp crawfish (12 per cent), Chinese mitten crab (10 per cent), and giant tiger prawns (10 per cent). Cupped oysters account for 28 per cent of molluscs farmed, Japanese carpet shells (25 per cent), various scallops (11 per cent), marine molluscs (11 per cent), and other sea mussels (six per cent). The UK’s favourite farmed fish is salmon, followed by trout, sea bass and bream, to a lesser extent turbot and halibut, and occasionally sturgeon and aged to get this seawater farming period down to 18 months. In Bakkafrost, in the Faroes, they aim to have 500g average smolt size within the next two years, and then go slightly higher, said Giskeodegard. From 2005/06 to 2012, average prices in Norway were NOK 30. Then there was a supply shock in the world. Within 18 months, the global supply growth increased by 33 per cent and prices dropped like a stone. From January 2013 this massive supply growth dried out, the growth period was over and supply growth went down from 20 per cent in 2012 to two per cent. The market was shaken and the prices went up 50 per cent (in NOK terms) overnight and established a new price level. ‘We had a report out that year saying that 40 is the new 30. That was a very brave thing to say then – typical analyst, very optimistic- but it turns out we were actually quite pessimistic because 40 was not the new 30, it turns out that 60 is the new 30! ‘That’s where the prices are today, and that’s where Fish Pool predicts it will be in the next few years. ‘We can conclude there has been established a new market, with the price twice as high as it used to be.’ Looking at export markets for salmon, Giskeodegard said Chile sold 30,000 tonnes of fresh salmon to China last year –– ‘an explosion’. The driving factors included demand growth, plus the fact that Chile had a lot of large salmon which is perfect for the Chinese market. And Chile built up their logistics. There hadn’t been any trans-Pacific flights before 2018 and now there are several direct flights to China, as well as to Korea.

Seminar.indd 41

Above: Nicki Holmyard, seafood writer and mussel farmer

barramundi. Prawns and shrimp come very high up the list, particularly the warm water variety, vannamei. Holmyard said she had tasted some grown in a recirculation system in England (in a farm that used to grow tilapia) but preferred the taste of wild caught shrimp. Identifying the constraints to the further growth of aquaculture, Holmyard listed disease, parasites, environmental concerns, escapes, conflict with legal and regulatory frameworks, social conflicts (from community protest to slave labour), lack of resilience to climate change (‘that is going to be the big one, we are going to be affected but we’re not sure how’), natural disasters, and feed. She suggested that spatial planning could help make aquaculture more sustainable because it takes into account disease risk prevention, management, and carrying capacity. It also helps to reduce conflict, improves public confidence, and helps facilitate certification. ‘Moving offshore will perhaps give fish more space to grow and people are looking at a variety of species, though it brings with it greater technical challenges as well as great potential,’ said Holmyard. Offshore projects already underway or planned include striped bass in Ensenda in Mexico; kampachi in Hawaii; yellow croaker in China; barramundi in Brunei; snapper and grouper in Indonesia; cobia in Panama; totoaba and red snapper in Baja, Mexico; yellowtail jack in California; salmon in Norway, Chile and Japan; and mussels in New Zealand, the US and UK (Offshore Shellfish). Wherever, and however, seafood is farmed, Holmyard said it needed to be an essential part of our future. Meanwhile, the Norwegian Seafood Council showed an increase in exports to China and Hong Kong between 2007 and 2019, up from 40,000 tonnes to an estimated 150,000 tonnes. ‘This is a four-fold increase in just 10 years in this region. By 2025 Atlantic salmon exports to China and Hong Kong are on track to reach 240,000 tonnes,’ said Giskeodegard. According to the World Bank, in 2010 most of the market was in the west but in 2030, some 66 per cent will be in Asia Pacific. ‘There are between one and two billion more consumers and most of them will never eat salmon, but some of them will eat some pieces of sushi and just that extra consumption is enough and the market potential is ‘unlimited’.’

Above: Giskeodegard (left) with Melanie Siggs (GAA) and Patrick Blow (M&S)


02/07/2019 12:16:37

Europe Training–and education Trainingfocus– and education Erasmus Plus


United weharmony stand European

How better mobility could address recruitment bottlenecks Aquaculture sector agreed on need for shared knowledge and skills framework


S we watch the ‘deal or no deal’ Brexit spectacle unfold before our eyes, the wealth of good news from the European aquaculture Erasmus camp this spring may come as a surprise. To jog our memories, the Erasmus Plus programme is administered by the Brussels Commission for the broad purpose of promoting labour mobility, a central premise of the EU mission and, ironically, one of the reasons the UK electorate voted to leave the EU. Within Erasmus Plus, mobility is promoted by Brussels in various ways: the recognition of National Qualification equivalencies in different European countries, international exchanges between learners and teaching staff and the collaborative development of innovative Vocational Education and Training (VET) that can provide European employers with the skilled and knowledgeable recruits they demand. Therefore, despite the Brexit backdrop, Erasmus Plus projects of direct value to aquaculture workforce development, involving UK organisations, are well worth reflecting on, including the new bids submitted earlier this year. If ‘no deal’ is averted and we end up with a deal, then there will be a further Erasmus bid round for the UK in 2020. Thereafter, our continuation will depend on the detailed terms of the withdrawal deal itself. It is worth noting, though, that even in the no deal scenario, the continuity of UK Erasmus partner organisations within any new projects secured in 2019 will be financially underpinned by government, giving we cater our future aquaculture learncauseOW for some optifor mism. ers warrants careful consideration, particularly against backdrop of the ongoing Brexit The Blue EDUthe catalyst ations andSkills Britain’s eventual exit from Thenegoti BlueEDU Sector Alliance (SSA) researching the skills needs and future education and trainEurope. ing requirements EU of countries cage farming With the releaseofin12May the Skills Review for finfiAquaculture sh, concludedSector in January 2019. commissioned the in Scotland, on behalf of the Aquaculture Industry Leadership 42 (AILG) and undertaken by HIE (Highlands and Group

H 48

Education - Martin Haynes.indd 42

The full reports and conclusions are available from the BlueEDU website (, but aside from the detailed findings, a strong desire by major north European finfish producer companies for a more collaborative approach towards workforce development will be the project’s lasting legacy. Due to the recent rapid growth of the salmon farming sector, employers in the northern European coastal zone have had to cast their net far and wide when recruiting and, consequently, many employees lack a suitable National Qualification. Although in-company training is offered, it is rarely accredited, limiting the career potential and mobility of staff. Some influential European producer company leaders have been most vocal during BlueEDU regarding the importance of solving technical challenges collectively. They believe that a common approach to work based VET, which includes transferable qualifications and work based learner exchanges, can provide synergy. They appear poised to promote knowledge exchange between countries and companies, helping the industry to come of age and raise its political profile within Europe as an environmentally responsible food producing sector for the future with the greatest growth potential. Future BlueVET solutions Consequently, a larger, three-year SSA Lot 2 bid (BlueVET) was submitted early in 2019, informed by BlueEDU findings. This includes a leading aquaculture Vocational Education and Training (VET) provider from each partner country - Norway, UK (Scotland), Ireland and Iceland. The VET providers will work closely with each other and with their industries to develop more accessible, higher quality work based qualifications that are Opposite: The aim is to transferable within northern Europe, ultimately enhancing labour mobility. improve access to Will there ever be one common aquaculture qualification for northern Euro- respected national pean aquaculture? This end game has evolved for other sectors, heavily driven qualifications by common European standards, but we have a slightly less ambitious aim for now - to harmonise, whereby each country understands and recognises each other’s national qualifications. Learner exchanges and labour mobility will be energised and the creation of a Islands Enterprise), is much toinform reflectthe an act on. framework of shared knowledge and skills for eachthere occupati on can This also sees the completi on ofplace the Erasmus+ BlueEDU Aquaculfuture revision or creation of nati onalautumn qualificati ons. This seems a logical ture Sector Skills Alliance Lot 1 project, researching the education and training toAbove start.and opposite: There is a growing appeti te departure needs from of 12the EU EU countries that cage nfish. Clearly, a wealth of opportunity While the UK’s eventual could potenti ally farm derailfithe in bothindustry Scotlandinterest and in labour awaits us, some of which is European mission, mobility appears too strong for thisintonature. hapNorway to explore Whatever mately means, theand UK government has reassured us pen, especially for those companies that areBrexit underulti Norwegian ownership theinterests mobility in exchange have many BlueVET countries. that we can partake in the coming 2019 and 2020 Erasmus+ bid rounds. opportunities On leaving the EU, the completion of any outstanding projects will be UK funded during transition. 02/07/2019 12:17:47

European harmony That is assuming BlueVET creates some high profile quick wins. The challenge of creating shared standards cannot be underestimated, however, and any ongoing initiatives to revise national standards, such as those emerging from the Scottish Technical Standard for containment recently, must be swept into a north European melting pot. A BlueVET Aquaculture Skills Foresight Forum (ASFF) will be established for this purpose with industry and VET representatives from each country. Optimal strategic partnership Alongside BlueEDU, Norway, Ireland and Scotland have already started to develop and pilot more innovative approaches to VET to build on during the second phase of the collaboration anticipated above. The three-year Optimal project concluding in October 2019 was based on a simple but challenging premise, namely, the ‘Recognition of Prior Learning’ (RPL). Traditionally, colleges recruited learners, put them through a suitable course to develop their knowledge and skills and assessed them continuously and/or on completion. This approach works well for relatively inexperienced school leavers. However, for the work based learners being so poorly served currently in Europe, it begs many questions. Often mature and with a lot of life experience, aquaculture knowledge and skills, they should not be assumed to be ‘empty vessels’. It is far more effective to find out what these learners know and can do at the beginning of their programme and then adapt delivery to suit their needs, helping them to fast track towards qualification completion. The Norwegian experience The Froya Upper Secondary School in mid Norway have had a group of 50 employees from industry attend 14 classes, each of three to four hours’ duration, during this academic year. Prior to starting each new subject, tutors have applied RPL using multiple choice questions, delivered by rapid response technology (RRT) accessed via the learner’s smart phone, to establish their existing knowledge individually and as a class. No individual responses were revealed to the group, creating a ‘safe’ environment, and tutors were able to adapt to focus their teaching on the areas of weakness, helping individuals prepare for their Journeyman Certificate final exam more effectively. Peer learning was encouraged, to benefit from the more experienced employees’ knowledge. The learners’ evaluation of this programme has shown that the motivation level has been unusually high, and all learners entered their final exam full of confidence. We will hear how they got on later in the summer! The Scottish experience In Scotland, learners on the long established Modern Apprenticeship (MA) in aquaculture, delivered by Inverness College, many of whom are also very experienced, have had a different RPL experience. Their entire programme is work based, and knowledge is normally assessed through a written portfolio. They do not attend college or meet as a group, other than at the beginning of the programme during induction. Multiple choice has been delivered via RRT, but under invigilated conditions by the course tutor during farm site visits. This is for good reason. It allows any knowledge that can be demonstrated at the beginning of a topic to be accredited by the SQA, thereby contributing towards the achievement of their MA with no further study, helping them to fast track. For any questions that they do not get correct, they receive a very specific chunk of learning related to the question, delivered via email as a pdf file. On completing the directed learning episode, they can enter a subsequent assessment to become accredited. Although it is early days, the feedback is very positive from learners, who have all taken well to this use of the rapid response technology, delivered via their mobile phones. Transferable lessons and resources The lessons learnt and resources developed within Optimal, once complete,

Education - Martin Haynes.indd 43

will be carried into future Erasmus Plus projects and, by establishing a shared Virtual Learning Environment (VLE), they will be further developed to make them more comprehensive, interactive and stimulating. Most importantly, they will be mapped to a framework of common aquaculture knowledge and skills for each occupation by the BlueVET countries. According to the BlueEDU findings, there is considerable common ground between the north European countries, as we farm the same fish species with comparable technology under similar environmental conditions. During the first week of September, many key Scottish stakeholders will be attending an Optimal dissemination session in Glasgow, to discuss Optimal output and evaluations from a Norwegian and Scottish perspective. Opinions will be gathered on how the future Erasmus projects confirmed in July can assist us, with the overarching aim of improving access to respected national qualifications by work based learners in Scotland. The implications of north European producers’ intention to ramp up collaborative workforce development and knowledge exchange will be a central theme. One thing is for sure, there will be more to unite us than divides us within European aquaculture VET. FF Martyn Haines is director of Pisces Learning Innovations, an education consultancy and partner within the BlueEDU Aquaculture Sector Skills Alliance, and welcomes your questions. He can be contacted by phone (01387 840697) and by email,

There is a strong desire by major producers for a more collaborative approach towards workforce development


02/07/2019 12:18:37

Aqua Nor 2019 – Preview

Full Spektrum

Even with a brand new building, sold out show has long waiting list


HIS year’s Aqua Nor show will be bigger than ever, with 600 exhibitors booked, a brand new Hall A within the Trondheim Spektrum and an expanded outdoor exhibition at nearby Skansen harbour. But already the organisers are thinking about how to increase space even further for 2021, when the next Aqua Nor is scheduled, because the waiting list of would be exhibitors is also reaching record proportions. ‘We have stopped counting,’ said Erik Hempel, long time communications director of the Nor-Fishing Foundation that organises the biennial Aqua Nor, which was launched 40 years ago. But the list was already up to 160 when Fish Farmer spoke to Hempel last month, and many companies, and even countries (including Scotland), have missed out on stands. Hempel said the 2019 show was fully booked by November last year and suggests that those serious about exhibiting should strike much earlier in future. ‘My advice now is to book during the exhibition – there is a booth there for the Foundation and you can book for Nor Fishing next year or Aqua Nor in 2021. You’re not asked to pay anything until you confirm.’ He could have easily filled two new Hall As this summer, and there will be extra space provided by two tents on either side of the hall, which replaces several smaller halls. There will be a new main entrance, facing the Nidelva river and out towards


Aqua Nor Intro.indd 44

Skansen, in addition to the original entry point, reducing queues and improving accessibility. And this year, there will be expansion at Skansen, the outdoor exhibition space on the harbour, a few minutes’ walk from the main Spektrum centre, with boats, cages and at least one feed barge on display. This is the place ‘where you get to experience the technology where it belongs, on and in the water’, says the Aqua Nor website, ‘filled with both exciting technology and people traveling to the exhibition by boat’. ‘We have a good cooperation with the port of Trondheim and they have been very kind to let us come there,’ said Hempel. Aqua Nor will be officially opened by Crown Prince Haakon, the heir to the Norwegian throne, who has become a regular at the event. ‘We were very happy that he said yes again,’ said Hempel. The Norwegian fisheries minister, Harald T Nesvik, will attend his first Aqua Nor, after spending the whole week at last year’s Nor Fishing. This was soon after he had been appointed and he was very popular with the exhibitors, said Hempel. Scotland’s Rural Affairs minister, Fergus Ewing, has announced that he will be at Aqua Nor, and there will be delegations from Brazil, China, Vietnam and Canada, among others. Hempel said there is also likely to be a significant presence from the Middle East, in particular Dubai and Saudi Arabia, but as visitors not exhibitors. ‘Some years ago, we participated in Agra Middle East [the huge international agriculture exhibition] which had a little corner called Aqua

My advice now is to book during the exhibition for Aqua Nor in 2021

Above: Skansen harbour Left: Crown Prince Haakon at the 2017 Aqua Nor. He will be at this year’s opening event too Opposite: Visitors enjoy the sun and the Scottish pavilion in 2017

02/07/2019 12:19:20

Full Spektrum

Aqua Nor traditions and innovations

Middle East,’ said Hempel. ‘This was coordinated by the woman who is now Minister of Food Security in Dubai. She has been very active in promoting aquaculture, and the Norwegians have invested in Dubai and Saudi Arabia and have built aquaculture production facilities there.’ There is now Norwegian involvement in Iran, too, and he is expecting unofficial Iranian delegations in Trondheim this year, as well as visitors from Africa. The big feed companies, which were very much the driving force when Aqua Nor was first started 1979, will not be exhibiting this year. Their absence will be noticed as they typically take huge stands, said Hempel, but they will still be making use of the show, ‘just being in town and walking around’. In the old days, Aqua Nor was about the pioneers, said Hempel – ‘little fish farmers from way up north who took the wife down to Trondheim – they’re all millionaires now!’ It was probably easier – and cheaper – to get hotel rooms back then. Now everything is booked, even though the famous Britannia Hotel has re-opened following refurbishment, with 300 extra rooms. On top of the exhibition, there will also be a packed seminar programme, still being put together, with a big focus on developments in both land based and offshore farming. In addition to the new hall, several meeting rooms have been built, providing better facilities, both for conferences with hundreds of participants and for smaller meetings. Aqua Nor 2019 is at Trondheim Spektrum from August 20 to 23. FF

Aqua Nor Intro.indd 45

THE first Aqua Nor exhibition was held in 1979 in Trondheim, and it really was not an exhibition at all. It was mainly a seminar about smolt production, writes Erik Hempel. But the organisers had allowed a few suppliers to exhibit their goods in the hallway. In fact, there were 18 stands, and only 150 participants at the seminar. But it was still considered a success, and the organisers soon decided to repeat it two years later, thus alternating with Nor-Fishing, the fisheries technology exhibition which started way back in 1960. During the second aquaculture exhibition, editor of Fishing News International, Peter Hjul, attended, and suggested that the exhibition should change its name from Fiskeoppdrett (Fish Farming) to the more international Aqua Nor. The name was adopted for the third exhibition in 1983, and has stayed the same since then. The organisers of Aqua Nor were from the start the Norwegian Fish Farmers’ Association (NFF) and the Fish Farmers Sales Organisation (FOS). But when FOS went bankrupt in 1991, the organisers of both Aqua Nor and Nor-Fishing got together, and the Nor-Fishing Foundation was established with the sole purpose of staging these two exhibitions. At the same time, the responsibility for the technical arrangement went to the owner of the exhibition halls, which at the time was Nidarøhallen, which changed its name in 2003 to Trondheim Spektrum. Odd Berg, who was originally marketing director of the FOS, was engaged as managing director of Nidarøhallen when FOS

Above: King Olav arrives at the 1988 opening. Below: Trondheim

went bankrupt, and that became the start of a long and important development of the exhibitions. Under Berg’s leadership, the exhibitions grew steadily, and a number of key features were introduced, among them the Innovation Award. Innovation has always been a central part of the exhibition, and in an effort to stimulate more innovation among the suppliers, in 2003 the Nor-Fishing Foundation decided to establish this special Innovation Award to be given to the person or institution who during the past year had come up with the best idea for innovation in the industry. The prize was modest: a work of art, a diploma and NOK 100 000. A highly qualified jury picks the finalists,

and the Board of Directors of the Foundation makes the final decision about the winner. The award is presented to the winner on the opening day of the exhibition, and it has become a highly respected prize, won in 2017 by Scottish company Ace Aquatec. Through the years, it has contributed to the development of a number of innovative products and services in the industry. Still run by Berg, the Innovation Award has attracted record entries this year, with 30 applications. There is also a Directorate of Fisheries’ Environment Award presented during the show to a producer or supplier who has come up with a solution that helps improve or safeguard the environment. The award has been presented for many years and is highly regarded by the industry. And since 2013, the Nor-Fishing Foundation has given a Best Stand Award to the most attractive and efficient stand at the show. (This is an excerpt from an article by Erik Hempel about the history of Aqua Nor, written for Fish Farmer’s 40th anniversary issue, published in October 2017.) What a Treat: Page 46


02/07/2019 12:19:43

Aqua Nor 2019 – Innovation Award

What a Treat! British firm a finalist in prestigious prize


ENCHMARK’S CleanTreat sea lice system is one of three finalsits in the Innovation Award, to be announced at Aqua Nor in August. The other two companies chosen by the judges of the Nor-Fishing Foundation are Trondheim based Ecotone, for its SpectraLice- a fully automatic underwater camera that counts lice on freely swimming salmon; and Mørenot Robotics, which has developed an autonomous underwater robot that prevents fouling growth on the net. The Aqua Nor organisers received a total of 30 applications for this year’s Innovation Award from innovator companies in 11 countries, with 40 per cent of entries from companies outside Norway. The Innovation Prize in 2017 was awarded to Scotland’s Ace Aquatec, for developing a humane electric stunning system. The Dundee based firm did not enter the competition this year. Carolina Faune, head of Nordics at aquaculture breeding and genetics specialist Benchmark, said: ‘We are pleased that the CleanTreat system has been recognised and shortlisted for this prestigious award. ‘The system is currently being used here in Norway and we are proud that we have developed and deployed a solution that contributes to a more sustainable


Aqua Nor Prize.indd 46

salmon industry.’ CleanTreat, claims Benchmark, has the potential to revolutionise the application of medicinal sea lice treatments by purifying treatment water and bringing an end to the discharge of treatment water into the sea. It is currently deployed in Norway, working alongside wellboats to remove medicines from sea lice bath treatment water. The system, which has so far processed more than 300,000 m3 of treatment water, can be used in the treatment of other diseases and parasitic infections. Neil Robertson, head of CleanTreat, will be on hand at Benchmark’s stand at Aqua Nor to discuss the technology. ‘For a truly sustainable system we must optimise genetics, health, and nutrition as well as providing knowledge to determine livestock performance,’ said Robertson. ‘I look forward to joining my colleagues to showcase the importance of bringing together technological innovations targeted at each stage of the production lifecycle. ‘At Benchmark, we take a holistic approach to the industry’s challenges, meaning we consider the economics, ethics, and environmental factors of each system. ‘Environmental protection is a fundamental element of this and I am confident that CleanTreat has the potential to be a real game changer for the industry.’ Ecotone’s SpectraLice is a fully automatic underwater camera that counts lice on freely swimming

I am “ confident

this has the potential to be a real game changer for the industry

Above: Ace Aquatec’s Nathan Pyne-Carter is awarded the 2017 prize by then fisheries minister Per Sandberg Left: Neil Robertson

02/07/2019 12:20:44

What a Treat! salmon. The camera has software that analyses all colours in reflected light and uses it for automatic detection. SpectraLice counts and reports salmon lice via 4G networks to the desired platform (plant, head office and portable devices). The system can also report to authorities and researchers. And Mørenot Robotics, of Bodø, Norway, has developed an autonomous underwater robot that prevents fouling growth on the net by using a continuous, low intensity brushing. NetRobot X2 is put into the water in a clean net and will keep the net wall continuously clean and free of fouling as long as the fish farmer wishes. The robot has electric thrusters that ensure proper pressure against the net and manoeuvring, according to the operating pattern of cleaning the entire net wall. The prize jury included Kjell Maroni of the Fisheries and Aquaculture Research Fund, Oddvar Staulen of Innovation Norway, and Jan Henrik Sandberg of the Norwegian Fishermen’s Association. They took into account the degree of innovation, the importance of the project for the aquaculture industry and the international market value for the developer. The board of the Nor-Fishing Foundation will review the jury’s recommendations in a meeting on Monday, August 19, and this year’s Innovation Award- of NOK 100,000 and a diploma- will be presented to the winner on the opening day of Aqua Nor, on August 20. FF

Making a mark with seminar BENCHMARK is staging a seminar during the Aqua Nor exhibition. Following a welcome from Benchmark CEO Malcolm Pye, the seminar programme will include the following presentations: • The importance of animal welfare in modern food production - do we take it seriously enough? - Dag Henning, director for eggs, MatPrat; • Cost and impact of sea lice - Audun Iversen, scientist, Nofima; • Understanding behaviour: the next step to ensure the welfare of farmed fish - Felicity Huntingford, emeritus professor of functional ecology, University of Glasgow, and Dr Sunil Kadri, Director, Aquaculture Innovation; • Genetic technologies in salmon farming – past,

Above: Malcolm Pye

present and future - Professor Trygve Gjedrem and Professor Ross Houston, University of Edinburgh. Benchmark has also booked exhibition space – in Hall D – where experts will gather from the company’s genetics, advanced nutrition, health and knowledge services businesses at the four-day event.

The seminar, followed by a reception, will be held on August 20, in the Clarion Hotel in Trondheim, from 3.15pm. To book places visit https:// benchmark-seminar-reception-aqua-nor-2019-registration-60129535058 Benchmark will be in Hall D stand 342.



AT BU 19 Y 77





Fish Farmer VOLUME 41




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Columnist Nick Joy on the precautionary principle


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10/12/2018 16:38:48 December Cover.indd 1

Aqua Nor Prize.indd 47


02/07/2019 12:22:24

Aqua Nor 2019 – Scottish Aquaculture Innovation Centre

Standing up for Team Scotland SAIC will share its exhibition space to showcase Scottish aquaculture - and provide industry with a ‘networking lounge’


HE Scottish Aquaculture Innovation Centre (SAIC) has not only secured a much coveted stand at Aqua Nor, but it has also managed to get prime position in the Trondheim Spektrum’s new Hall A. But SAIC is not keeping its space to itself. CEO Heather Jones said her organisation is ‘very active in supporting a Scottish mission to Aqua Nor’. ‘The stand isn’t about SAIC, it’s about Scotland, it’s about the supply chain, it’s about the innovation, it’s about the research expertise and capability,’ she told Fish Farmer last month. The Scottish Pavilion that was hailed as such a success at Aqua Nor 2017 will sadly not be repeated this year. But SAIC’s presence will go a long way in making up for the lost opportunity. The popularity of Aqua Nor in the aquaculture calendar means it is very much first come, first served with exhibition space, and Jones credits her Norwegian colleague, ‘secret weapon’ and marketing and communications manager Benedikte Ranum, a Trondheim local, for negotiating with the organisers for a late slot. The 20 square metre stand will be jointly branded with ‘Scotland is Now’,


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02/07/2019 12:23:35

Standing up for Team Scotland

If any company is planning to be in Aqua Nor and doesn’t have a stand, we would invite them to contact us

a collaborative campaign between the Scottish government,VisitScotland, Scottish Development International (SDI) and Universities Scotland. SAIC’s team of four on the stand will be complemented by representatives from Highlands and Islands Enterprise (HIE) and SDI. ‘The government is very keen that there is a ‘Team Scotland’ approach to international engagement,’ said Jones. ‘It’s our stand but we’re co-branding with their messaging. ‘SAIC sees it as our duty to work with other Scottish public bodies that would have liked to have been there, and therefore can be there in association with our stand.’ Crucially for Scottish companies and academics who had hoped for booths on a national pavilion, SAIC’s stand will operate as a ‘networking lounge’.

Aqua Nor - SAIC.indd 49

‘If any company is planning to be out in Aqua Nor and doesn’t have stand space, we would invite them to contact our events manager Hazel Peat ( ‘She is organising a booking service if companies want to have a conversation with Norwegian companies. ‘What we’re creating on the stand is a Scottish networking lounge; Above: The SAIC team (from left to right): Sam obviously it won’t work if everyone comes at the same time so we’ll have a Houston, Heather Jones, booking system. ‘But we’re absolutely trying to facilitate commercially promising conversaBenedikte Ranum, Polly Douglas, Robin Shields, tions or collaborative research promising conversations. Caroline Griffin, Don ‘There is nothing like having a physical presence and being there and Fowler, Lynsey Muir and having social networks and bumping into people and bringing people to the Evelyn Chan. stand. Opposite: Heather Jones ‘We’re offering that to all our consortium partners, academic and com(top), Benedikte Ranum; mercial. Scottish businesses have an opportunity to book a slot and meet and in the baord room, people on the stand.’ with David Macfarlane SAIC will welcome Rural Economy minister Fergus Ewing to the stand (far left) and Hazel Peat and is also co-hosting a reception with Stirling’s Institute of Aquaculture. (second right) And there will be other members of the SAIC consortium holding their own events at the stand, which is positioned diagonally opposite and adjacent to a research cluster of exhibitors, including Nofima, Sintef, FHF (the


02/07/2019 12:23:54

Aqua Nor 2019 – Scottish Aquaculture Innovation Centre

Above: An early mockup of the SAIC stand cladding.

There is nothing like “ having a physical presence and being there ”

Norwegian Seafood Research Fund) and Innovation Norway. ‘We’re actually in a section where all of the innovation research collaboration type bodies from Scotland and Norway are going to be co-located,’ said Jones. ‘And we’re in discussions with some of those bodies about having joint events at our stand – probably showcasing existing good collaboration with Norway, such as on AGD.’ Jones is also planning a Wisa (Women in Scottish Aquaculture) event on the stand, looking at good practice between Norway and Scotland in terms of women leaders. ‘There will be some kind of message around role modelling and setting aspirations for Scottish women to progress by looking at what is already happening in Norway,’ she said. As an exhibitor, SAIC can also access VIP meeting room facilities, which will be used for a ‘Team Scotland’ seminar - led by SDI and supported by HIE and SAIC - on Tuesday, August 20, the first day of the exhibition. Running from midday to 2pm, this will promote ‘the ambition and capability of the Scottish aquaculture supply chain, demonstrating its high standards, innovation and capability’, said Jones. The seminar is going to feature Fergus Ewing as a keynote speaker, and will also include an industry plenary session to discuss what the Scottish supply chain can bring to the global market place. ‘It’s about supporting Scottish companies to export their products or services internationally,’ said Jones. ‘The seminar is about Scotland being open for business; we have lots of innovative companies and we want to access global markets.’ Organised in conjunction with HIE and SDI, there will be a video showing great practice in Scotland, a networking lunch, and a taste of Scotland’s finest drinks in the shape of some single malt whisky and Scottish distilled gin. ‘We’re not pretending to be an alternative to the Scottish Pavilion of 2017, we’re nothing like as big,’ said Jones. ‘But we felt there was a clear opportunity for the positive messages happening around the industry in Scotland, and Benedikte opened the door for us. ‘Everyone is now working together to make sure the resources that are available can be used to maximum effect. ‘That is one of the joys of having an innovation centre that is dedicated to a sector - we can help others realise how important aquaculture is to the Scottish economy.’ Visit SAIC in Hall A, stand A-145. FF

Leading Scottish supplier out in Force SCOTLAND will also be well represented at the Aqua Nor exhibition in Trondheim by Gael Force Group. The Inverness based aquaculture equipment supplier is taking an 84 square metre stand in Hall D, alongside the big Norwegian players. From here, it plans the global launch of what it describes as ‘a newly developed and highly innovative product to the market’. The exhibition space – a huge step up from the company’s 12 square metre stall at the 2017 Aqua Nor- will also be a showcase for current products and services. And Gael Force will host a special reception on the opening day,August 20, where guests will be invited to the stand for the official unveiling of the new product, while enjoying some Scottish hospitality. They will also be joined by a VIP speaker – to be announced soon - at the reception. Gael Force marketing manager Marc Wilson said:‘It is fair to say that excitement is building as we get closer to Aqua Nor. ‘We are delighted to be taking a massive step up in stand space compared to two years ago, which is an indication of our growth in standing as a supplier in the global aquaculture sector and, most importantly, will enable us to offer a first class experience to visitors looking to get a real sense of the type of products and services Gael Force offers.’ Gael Force Group will be in Hall D on stand D-355.


Aqua Nor - SAIC.indd 50

02/07/2019 12:24:19

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02/07/2019 12:25:04

Aqua Nor 2019 – Preview

Hard to miss Akva expands indoors and outdoors


KVA group will be one of the first companies Aqua Nor visitors see as they enter Hall D, and its stand will be the biggest in the room. The Norwegian company, which has its UK base in Inverness, will also have a sizeable presence at the outdoor exhibition on Skansen harbour, where it will berth a new feed barge. This has features such as waterborne feeding, flexible feeding, and battery hybrid EL power. There will be new Polarcirkel boats, new plastic pens and more to see, too, along with Akva subsidiary, Sperre ROV Technology. Akva group Land Based, a growing part of the company, will have a team on the stand in Hall D. This division recently announced the opening of a new RAS office in Trondheim to assume an even stronger position in the Norwegian market. ‘We’re experiencing an increased demand for our services and have been growing fast during the last couple of years,’ said Morten Nielsen, COO of Akva Land Based. ‘In 2018, we opened a sales and service office in Bergen, and now we’re expanding further with an additional office in Trondheim. This will become our head office for RAS projects in Norway.’

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Aqua Nor - Nauplius.indd 52

See us at AQUA NOR Stand No. D-360

The new office will house RAS technology specialists and will play an important role in managing and coordinating the company’s Norwegian RAS projects. Ole Jonny Nyhus, who has extensive experience with land based projects from AKVA group Land Based’s engineering department at Sømna, will head the office. ‘By establishing a new office we will not only increase our presence in the Norwegian market, but also get closer to our customers. ‘RAS projects are incredibly complex, with advanced technology and major investments in play. Thus, this is an important strategic move to provide our customers with the best possible support throughout the project life.’ The Trondheim office will have a close collaboration with the other units within AKVA group Land Based, in particular the Danish department, which comprises a large group of RAS specialists with extensive international experience. The land based division in Akva group has already had a close cooperation across boarders through several years, and now has 160 employees in Norway, Denmark and Chile. During Aqua Nor, Akva said it will provide advice on all aspects of farming facilities, whether they relate to the actual infrastructure, technical operations, optimisation through software or service and maintenance. ‘Our goal is to give our visitors an exciting experience and, not least, to get even better acquainted with new and old customers,’ said the company in a blog. ‘We are looking forward to meeting you there!’ Visit Akva on stand D-338 and at Skansen. FF

goal “isOur to give

our visitors an exciting experience

Above: Image of Akva’s two-tier stand in Hall D

02/07/2019 12:27:07

Hard to miss

Nauplius fits Hydrolicer to third boat for Mowi Scotland NAUPLIUS Workboats was due to deliver the third of its series of 2712 boats to Mowi Scotland this month, joining the two already in service with the farmer on the west coast. The three new 27m by 12m landing utility vessels were ordered last year by DESS Aquaculture Shipping Norway, a joint venture between Mowi and Solstad Farstad, and chartered by Mowi. The boats are a further development of the Nauplius 19m version (1907LUV), a hybrid design with large deck space. The 27m long design allows space for two cranes, an HS Marine AKC 145-20 HE4 and an AK 48-18,5 E5, as well as several trucks and deck space for seven 20ft containers and three 10ft containers. The vessel can also be used for fish feed deliveries and has six cabins for crew. The versatile LUV can carry two artic lorries by using its bow ramp, and carry more than 150 tonnes of cargo; and with its two cranes, it can load and offload fish feed to feed barges as well. The third boat, the Beinn Nebheis, has been fitted by the Dutch yard with a fourline Hyrdolicer, built on to the deck, in a conversion that will keep the vessel within 190x130mm_Naup_aquanor.pdf 1 the Workboat Code.






‘To marry up the four-line Hydrolicer, we adapted the system to the vessel and the vessel to the system,’ said Gerrit Knol, naval architect of Nauplius Workboats. ‘The Hydrolicer system consists of two 40ft containers which contain the Hydrolicer, and also the Venturi pumps.’ Via an Argos Engineering designed A-frame with four suction hoses, the salmon enter the Hydrolicer system. Aftwards of the Hydrolicer containers, a de-waterer has been placed and, via a return channel that goes back to the transom or goes over the bow, the salmon will go back into a fish pen. By using the layout of the vessel it was even possible to put two drum filters on board to separate the sea lice from the sea water; the sea lice are transported to a belt filter, said Nauplius. Due to the vessel’s massive carrying capacity, it is possible to carry the weight of the flooded Hydrolicer. By increasing ballast tank capacity, it is even possible to lower the freeboard at the fish pen to below 1m. This will have a positive effect on the welfare of the salmon while being treated. 24-06-19 16:27 Some other minor adjustments were

made to the hull of the vessel and several components of the Hydrolicer system were integrated into the vessel and its system. The layout of the vessel is so efficient, said Nauplius, that all secondary equipment, such as the ozone generator for disinfecting the system, and also the oxygen saturation equipment, has been placed on board. All major electrical components and pumps were placed below deck. To operate the whole system, Nauplius increased Above: The first in the the power generation system significantly, series of Nauplius up to almost one megawatt of electrical workboats for Mowi power. Nauplius will be on stand A-186.

AHOY @ Aquanor stand A-186




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02/07/2019 12:27:30

Aqua Nor 2019 – Preview

Perfectly chilled fab four AS temperatures drop this autumn, things are heating up for four Norwegian refrigeration and freezing manufacturers. Kuldeteknisk, FrioNordica, Kjøleservice Helgeland and Multi Kulde are set to merge becoming the ‘Perfect Temperature Group’. PTG will feature an integrated management group from the merging companies. In addition to the appointment of Terje Arnesen as CEO and Milos Golic as CFO, Ketil Røberg (FrioNordica) has acquired responsibility for the marine and industry market area. And Martin Schjølberg (Kuldeteknisk) will be responsible for the commercial and climate market area. ‘We’re very pleased to have secured Arnesen and Golic to continue our work of building a strong technology group to support growth in the global seafood industry,’ said Arnstein Gunnestad Endresen, chair of PTG. Anders Høifødt, partner at Nord Kapitalforvaltning, the principal shareholder in PTG, added: ‘We’re stronger together and will concentrate on developing environment friendly and energy efficient solutions.’ The company is looking forward to growing together and is actively recruiting. Perfect Temperature Group is on stand A-198.

As leading supplier of anti-predator netting in Chile, we are proud to introduce SUPRA to the European Market. Anti-predator Nets


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Blue tech firm that’s poised for take-off NORWEGIAN 3D visualisation and virtual reality company Nagelld has hired a new CEO, Danwald Lønningen. Formerly wtih ATPI Marine & Energy, one of the world’s largest travel management companies, Lønningen is a welcome asset to the company, said Helge Bjordal, founder and current CEO. ‘The employment of Mr Lønningen is an important step for us in our goal to become even more ‘hands on’ and to meet the demand of increasing international interest for our services,’ he said, ‘not least to be able to offer more

exciting tech solutions for small, medium and large businesses.’ The company has a significant client list, within the ‘the blue industries’ of aquaculture, shipping and energy, and has a showroom for industrial, commercial VR, AR, mixed reality and interactive 3D. Nagelld received an endorsement from Norwegian prime minister Erna Solberg during Nor-Shipping in June 2019. Solberg seemed inspired by the possibilities within VR-AR-mixed reality and interactive 3D. Nagelld will be on stand D-345.

Rigged Cages

Above: A company that’s going places

02/07/2019 12:29:10

Aqua Nor 2019 – Preview

FishGLOBE closes in on delivery FishGLOBE’s V5 closed post-smolt facility continues to move forward, with the construction and assembly work completed in Bamble, Norway, last month. The Globe measures 22m in diameter, with a height of 19m, and some 250 tonnes of fish can be stored within its 3,500 cubic metres. Included in the project are compressors, air dryers, and pressure tanks from Nessco, Norway’s leading supplier of those products. In addition, a blower is used to empty the Globe and transfer it to a wellboat. The Globe has also been equipped with a feeding system with data acquisition and remote operations capabilities, supplied by Steinsvik. The Globe was due to be lifted to sea in early July and towed to Stavanger, before anchoring. The final installation will take place in August, along with the testing of all equipment and systems. Then, at the end of August, the the FishGLOBE V5 will be officially handed over to customer RyFish. Grieg Seafood Rogaland will operate the FishGLOBE on behalf of RyFish. On August 19, the day before the start of Aqua Nor, FishGLOBE has organised a one-hour boat transfer from Stavanger to visit its Globe in situ, and to demonstrate how it operates in practice. FishGLOBE CEO Tor Hellestol told Fish Farmer: ‘We are following the plan. Construction has gone as we hoped and at the moment everything looks good. We have to wait for the test results but things are going as expected.’ Find FishGLOBE at Aqua Nor on stand D-345.

We have to wait for the test results but things are going as expected

Above: FishGLOBE under construction

Visit us at Aqua Nor - Stand D-337

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02/07/2019 12:29:29

Aqua Nor 2019 – Preview

Danes gain Sustainable solutions for growing international markets

T Your partner in aquaculture


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HE Danes are always much in evidence at Aqua Nor and this year will be no exception as some 29 Danish suppliers take space in the Pavilion of Denmark. They will be showcasing a wide range of products that can help the aquaculture industry move towards more sustainable solutions, according to Martin Winkel, head of the Fish Tech Group, which is organising the pavilion. ‘Right now, we are really experiencing a shift in the market, with an industry focusing on developing more sustainable production, while still being able to meet the growing demand for farmed fish,’ said Winkel. ‘Accordingly, this offers great potential for Danish suppliers that hold a position as front runners in developing new technology, with a strong focus on high quality solutions, cost efficiency and sustainability.’ One of the Danish suppliers exhibiting is Lykkegaard, a pump technology specialist, consultant and supplier to both sea and land based fish installations across the world. Lykkegaard agrees that there is increasing demand for more sustainable production. ‘The industry has intensified its focus on the environment, and we are experiencing a growing interest in solutions that are stable and long- asting,’ said Karsten Lykkegaard, managing director. ‘The market, for example, is asking for solutions that can be repaired instead of being replaced when worn out.’ To meet such demands, Lykkegaard is launching the world’s first high performing, corrosion resistant pump for saltwater. ‘Due to challenging conditions in aggressive water with high temperatures and salinity, fish farmers risk that pumps corrode very quickly,’ said Lykkegaard. ‘This causes unnecessary downtime and fish death because the water is not being oxidised and cleaned. ‘With our new pump, made of the extremely durable material HDPE, fish farmers can get a guaranteed 100 per cent corrosion resistant solution and avoid fish death. ‘Moreover, the pumps will last for many years ahead and are easy to service because no electrical motor parts are under water. ‘Propeller pumps are axial pumps, that meet the need for high performance circulation of large volumes of water at low pressure. ‘This ensures fish farmers documented low energy consumption and a cost efficient solution.’ The Pavilion of Denmark is on stand A-183 and stand D-360. FF

Above: Lykkegaard is launching the world’s first corrosion resistant pump for saltwater

is “There great

potential for Danish suppliers, front runners in developing new technology

02/07/2019 12:30:26

All our products are designed to withstand the harsh weather and currents of the North Atlantic, and can be tailor made for your specific needs.

Visit us at Aqua Nor - Stand D-320

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02/07/2019 12:31:47

Aqua Nor 2019 – Xelect advertorial

AQUA-FAANG shows its teeth New EU consortium aims to enhance selective breeding


COTTISH genetics company Xelect is a key industrial partner in AQUA-FAANG, a major new EU funded consortium of academic institutions and companies, aiming to provide a greater understanding of the function of fish genomes in order to enhance selective breeding in six key aquaculture species. The global aquaculture industry is developing at an unprecedented pace, with new species being domesticated and the total tonnage of production rapidly growing to meet ever increasing demand. One way to facilitate the growth of the industry is by selective breeding, which can improve the efficiency and sustainability of aquaculture production by steadily improving broodstock for important traits such as growth, feed conversion efficiency,


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and resistance to disease. Recent advances in genomics and computational techniques have made it possible to more accurately choose genetically superior animals for selective breeding, which in turn drives faster improvement of traits. The current gold standard method is called genomic selection, which involves looking at tens or hundreds of thousands of genetic markers in each animal. However, despite huge technical advances in these areas, genomic selection remains too expensive for regular use in the breeding programmes of most aquaculture species. One way of reducing the cost of these technologies is to improve our understanding of the complex levels of genome regulation that influence trait variation. If we can understand which genetic variants in the genome are directly causal for targeted traits, we can use genetic tests specific to those variants, making it much less expensive to identify genetically superior animals for selective breeding – so called precision breeding. AQUA-FAANG is a newly launched

Above: Xelect’s genetic lab in St Andrews Scotland Below: A successful kick off meeting was held in Oslo in May 2019

02/07/2019 12:32:43

AQUA-FAANG shows its teeth

four-year, €6 million EU-funded project co-ordinated by Professor Sigbjørn Lien from the Norwegian University of Life Sciences, and Dr Dan Macqueen (University of Edinburgh), involving 24 partners across Europe. It aims to deliver a step change in the understanding of genome function for six key aquaculture species (Atlantic salmon, rainbow trout, seabass, gilthead sea bream, turbot and common carp) and provide a direct pathway to the commercialisation of the key findings through the involvement of industry partners, including the Scottish based specialist aquaculture genetics company Xelect. Professor Ian Johnston, CEO of Xelect, told Fish Farmer: ‘This challenging but exciting project is a huge step towards bringing affordable genomic selection to the whole industry.’ Xelect’s Dr Tom Ashton added: ‘Xelect is delighted to actively contribute to this project and work alongside the leading researchers in Europe.’ Xelect provides specialist genetics and breeding management services to the aquaculture industry worldwide. The company has full responsibility for managing breeding programmes for a wide range of species in Australia, Chile, Croatia, Greece, Malaysia, Mexico, New Zealand, Vietnam and the United Kingdom. It also provides breeding programme support to companies in Canada, Denmark, France, Poland, Madagascar, Switzerland, Turkey and Thailand. The company was founded by Johnston and Ashton in 2012, as a spin-out from a leading aquaculture research group at the University of St Andrews. Today, the company employs a highly skilled team of quantitative geneticists, molecular biologists, bioinformaticians, as well as aquaculture and breeding programme specialists. It has fully serviced and well equipped laboratories and a strong research and

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development capacity, allowing it to develop the genetic tools required to initiate selective breeding in species that are new or recent to aquaculture. The company is strongly networked with national and international academic partners. A key commercial objective arising from these collaborations is a desire to develop cost effective tools for advanced breeding technologies that are affordable for its customer base, which mostly comprises medium sized producers (3,000 to 20,000 tonnes). Xelect’s primary role in the AQUA-FAANG project is to lead a task force, developing genotyping technology that is intended to reduce the costs of genomic selection. The goal is to develop a single, low cost genotyping platform that can perform many functions at once: parentage assignment and pedigree reconstruction, testing of known functional regions, as well as interacting with other high density genetic marker panels to allow for low cost genomic selection. This will reduce genotyping costs to make advanced breeding techniques available to small and medium sized producers. The AQUA-FAANG project has received funding from the European Union’s Horizon 2020 research and innovation programme under grant agreement No 817923

This “ challenging

but exciting project is a huge step towards bringing affordable genomic selection to the whole industry

Visit Xelect at Aqua Nor 2019 on stand A-153 in Hall A. FF

PARTICIPANT ORGANISATIONS Norwegian University of Life Sciences THE UNIVERSITY OF EDINBURGH European Molecular Biology Laboratory WAGENINGEN UNIVERSITY Institut National de la Recherche Agronomique EUROPEAN FORUM OF FARM ANIMAL BREEDERS The University Court of the University of Aberdeen UNIVERSITA DEGLI STUDI DI PADOVA Hellenic Centre for Marine Research UNIVERSIDAD DE SANTIAGO DE COMPOSTELA Polska Akademia Nauk UNIVERSITAT DE BARCELONA University of Birmingham IMPERIAL COLLEGE OF SCIENCE TECHNOLOGY AND MEDICINE Xelect Limited AQUA GEN AS Valle Cà Zuliani SocietaAgricola.R.L. PANITTICA ITALIA SOCIETA AGRICOLA SRL Ovapiscis S.A. STOLT SEA FARM S.A. Aquicultura Balear SA GENEAQUA SL Syndicat Des Selectionneurs Avicoles et Aquacoles Francais NIREFS ICHTHIOKALLIERGEIES ANONYMI ETAIRIA


02/07/2019 12:33:01

Seawork Boat Show

The Beautiful South Exhibition keeps working for working boats



HE midsummer skies in Southampton were battleship grey for the entire Seawork Exhibition last month, but that didn’t seem to cloud the enthusiasm evident with most exhibitors and visitors to the show. Seawork, held at the city’s Mayflower Park, has now been working for working boats for more than 20 years. From the first show in 1997 with 64 stands, the 2019 version has expanded to 610 stands, attracting 7,700 visitors from over 70 countries worldwide. Andrew Webster, CEO of Mercator Media, the organiser of Seawork, told Fish Farmer: ‘The industry is experiencing an uncertain period and we are seeing some investment decisions deferred; however, there are still major launches and big deals being signed. ‘From ship and boat building to propulsion and hybrid power, from fitting out to all forms of support, it’s great to see the whole supply chain involved. ‘Despite Brexit uncertainty, Seawork is seen by the industry as a safe pair of hands and the best place for serious business networking.’ As with the Skipper Expo Show in Aberdeen in May, many companies are coming to appreciate the growing significance and opportunities that aquaculture can bring to their business. Of the boat and ship builders in Southampton, Damen had a significant presence once again. In addition to its land based stand, the company brought two vessels, including the Shoalbuster 2711. At 27m long and 11m wide, this model has evolved from the Shoalbuster 2709. With a draught of only three metres, it is suitable for fish farms as well as heavier work. The extra two metres width provide room for a bigger handling capability, including a bigger crane. Here, the crane used was an HS Marine 185 (tonne per metre). Damen says the extra width gives any crew ‘the space to work’. New launches came from local firm the SMS Group and its sister company Wight Shipyard. David Rutter, small boats manager with SMS, introduced the firm’s new Bulldog range of aqua workboats, ranging in length from 9.5 up to 35m. This is a big investment said Rutter: ‘At the moment, much of the business is refitting within our dry dock facility. ‘Now we can produce vessels all to MCA code build, versatile on engines and fit out to the customers’ requirements. ‘We have just delivered a 24m vessel to a tuna farm in Malta. We know the aquaculture industry


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in Scotland plans to double in size in the next ten years and we want to be part of it. We’re creating jobs for workers in British yards.’ The Bulldog range is designed by Naval Architects Walker Marine Design (WMD). Nikki Walker, business development director of WMD, told Fish Farmer: ‘We offer a bespoke service with each boat personally designed. ‘We are hoping to go to Aquaculture UK next year at Aviemore as, in the last 12 months, enquiries from fish farms have doubled.’ Wight Shipyard also launched a new 9m hybrid patrol craft, running on battery power with emissions free capability. Another local company with news at the show was Hythe’s Meercat Boats. They handed over Meercat’s biggest build to date, a new MRV22 landing craft to Topbond plc, the UK’s leading independent marine civil engineering specialist. This was in addition to a recent 15m multi-role vessel delivered to the Scottish Salmon Company. The naval architects were again WMD.

Clockwise from top left: The Damen Shoalbuster 2711 with onboard HS Marine 185 crane; an aerial view of the exhibition site; Malin Workboats’ stand; Meercat Boats’ stand; Wight Shipyard; outdoor vessel displays (Photos: Scott Binnie)

From Norway, came Hukkelberg Boats. Hukkelberg has exhibited at Seawork for several years,

02/07/2019 12:34:12

The Beautiful South

bringing a range of reliable, high performance vessels with flexible designs, of interest to aquaculture and beyond. These include recent builds for Mowi and Leroy in Norway. The boats come with ROV capabilities and a 3D bottom scanner option. ‘We start with the drive system and build the boat around it,’ said sales manager Thomas Breivik. ‘Safety is first and foremost and we must always learn. If we think we know everything, then we are wrong.’ Neptune Marine from the Netherlands was having a boat delivered to Canada the week after the show with another to follow. It includes a four-line hydrolicer, supplied by Cflow and Hydrolicer, which is capable of being extended to six lines. The Canadian authorities require cleaner, more environmentally friendly engines, and the slightly higher costs are factored in, but the experience will help Neptune in future, both in Canada and back in Europe if environmental requirements tighten. Scottish Workboat Builder Malin Workboats attended with a new stand demonstrating its capability to design, build and deliver a new range of workboats suitable for various sectors, including fish farming. Graham Tait of Malin Workboats said: ‘We have had a lot of interest in our capability to both design and deliver in Scotland, especially from the Scottish fish farming sector, which is good.’ Two other Scottish companies whose business is primarily workboat hire are Aberdeenshire’s McLachlan Marine and Maritime Craft Services from Ayrshire. McLachlan has been operating since 2011 and has chartered out boats from one day to three years. The company says that because of the wide variety it offers, it sees itself as the ‘Swiss army knife’ of workboat operators. Providing workboats internationally for more than 40 years, mostly for dredging and marine construction, MCS is looking to aquaculture as an area to move into. One company’s products evident around the show were the cranes of HS Marine. Having just moved to a new factory in Viadana, Northern Italy, on its stand it had an HSM 48 model (48 tonnes per metre), but it has just sold two cranes, with another order in the pipeline, at a massive 850tpm. HS Marine is currently working on a project to provide a fish farm with a

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We know the aquaculture industry in “Scotland plans to double in the next ten years and we want to be part of it ”


02/07/2019 12:35:14

Seawork Boat Show 550tpm crane. An HS Marine crane was also on board a vessel from Aspect Surveys. Formerly a crew transfer boat in Germany, this has been converted into a survey vessel, including a remote control boat and a second, portable crane. Ideally suited to the renewable energy industry, Aspect also sees the potential business from new and existing fish farm sites. Another company specialising in surveying is Ecospan Environmental. Based in Plymouth, it has worked with Scottish fish farms and sees the potential in building that side of the business. The firm has recently built a 37m vessel with an onboard mechanised harvest system, now in situ in Vietnam. And more cranes from Italy! Bologna based Heila has been producing custom built marine and offshore cranes for 41 years. To satisfy the demands of fish

Brexit uncertainty, the show “Despite is seen as a safe pair of hands’ ”

farms, it has introduced to its range extra long armed cranes (to 21m). With the ability to lift four tonnes, there have been orders from Scotland and Italy. ROV (remotely operate vehicle) company Blueye now has its underwater drones in more than 100 fish farms in Norway, as well as others in Chile, Canada and Scotland. Blueye spokesman Henri Parviainen said: ‘Inside and outside the pens our ‘eyes below the surface’ help with net inspection, lice, mortalities and health.’ The ROV allows the fish farmer to really ‘swim with the fish’, he added, and Blueye is looking forward to more success when it exhibits at Aqua Nor later this year. Also with ROVs, Atalantas Marine, the distributor of the Videoray range, had its new model, the MSS Pro 5, launched at the end of last year with all new

Clockwise from left: Neptune Marine stand; Helia crane; Baltic Workboats’ stand; WaterMota stand.

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02/07/2019 12:35:39

The Beautiful South

And looking north….

technology, and it is already picking up good sales. Supplying the maritime industry with engines since 1911, WaterMota has attended every Seawork exhibition and finds it always a ‘good, positive show’. Its range of pumps are used on fish farms and the team sees a growing demand across aquaculture. And again in the world of aquaculture, there was news from the NRG Marine stand of trials just about to get under way at a Scottish fish farm, in conjunction with the OES Group, that if successful could prove to be something of great interest right across the industry. Updates to follow! Finally, Shawbrook Bank also had a stand. It regards itself as a traditional bank with lending out based on deposits in. A specialist in the marine industry, it brings the knowledge of being ‘a specialist arm of a specialist arm’. FF

A MAJOR deal was signed at Seawork between Shetland based Unst Inshore Services (Fluggaboats) and Proteum, the marine distributor from Southampton. Proteum will supply eight 150hp OXE Diesel outboard engines, which are for four twin engined 8.5m Fluggaboats ordered from Unst Inshore Services (UIS) by Grieg Seafood Shetland. Collaboration between Grieg and UIS on both the design and spec of the craft means the new version is very versatile and ideal for the fish farming sector. The boats will be supplied to sites in Shetland this year, fully coded to the new MCA Cat3 workboat rules. UIS has monitored the OXE progress over

Above: Jack Barclay of Fluggaboats and Andrew Tait from Proteum Left: Diesel outboard 8.5m Fluggaboat

five years, so was confident to offer this option to Grieg. The deal marks another major investment by Grieg in a local Scottish yard. Fluggaboats has always been involved in the fish farming sector, and has the skill and knowledge of the industry to know what the market wants and needs.

Feeding the future.




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02/07/2019 12:36:03

AquaGen – Advertorial


muscle in New research findings to revolutionise salmonid production


ALMON that makes efficient use of its feed is crucial if we are to ensure sustainable growth in aquaculture. Hanne Dvergedal, a PhD student working with Foods of Norway, has discovered a pioneering method to detect the most efficient salmonid bodybuilders. Aquaculture has experienced enormous growth in the past decade and is playing an increasingly important role in providing the world’s protein supply. In Norway, salmon and trout production has reached 1.35 million tonnes and is projected to reach five million tonnes by 2050. Sustainable growth in this sector is, however, hampered by several factors, such as access to high quality feed resources and rising feed costs. According to the Norwegian Directorate of Fisheries (NDF), the country’s feed bill amounts to 2.3 billion euros, which is nearly 50 per cent of the production costs of salmonid aquaculture. Foods of Norway has now developed a new and ground breaking method for selecting salmon with higher feed efficiency, which has the potential to considerably reduce costs and the environmental footprint of the aquaculture industry. ‘With novel indicator traits for feed efficiency, you get faster growing fish at a lower cost,’ said Dvergedal, at the Norwegian University of Life Sciences (NMBU). ‘In selective breeding, this could be of great significance.’ Increasing profitability Norway is the second largest global exporter of seafood and the leading exporter of salmonids (Atlantic salmon and rainbow trout). Feed efficiency is one of the most economically important traits for breeding.

Below: Hanne Dvergedal of Foods of Norway has, for the first time ever, successfully documented genetic variations in feed efficiency in Atlantic Salmon. Right - (top): Jorgen Odegard, senior scientist in AquaGen and associate professor at NMBU. (below): Trina Galloway, senior researcher at AquaGen Opposite: Hanne Dvergedal

Improving feed efficiency in the Norwegian aquaculture industry by just one per cent would increase the current annual value by at least 23 million Euros, according to NDF. To improve feed efficiency by breeding, the feed intake and body growth of individual fish must be measured. This is easily done for body growth, but very difficult for feed intake, as farmed fish are typically kept in large units and fed communally by dispersing feed into the water. Dvergedal has been studying feed efficiency


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02/07/2019 12:36:53

Bodybuilders muscle in

in Atlantic salmon for the last three years, in close collaboration with AquaGen, a breeding company and partner in Foods of Norway. Their results open the way to directly select fish with higher feed efficiency, without measuring feed intake. This has never been done before. ‘The results from Hanne’s PhD work are of great interest to AquaGen as they may enable us to improve feed efficiency through breeding, which fits well with our strategy of facilitating responsible and sustainable development of the aquaculture industry,’ said Trina Galloway, a senior researcher at AquaGen. Locating the bodybuilders Due to the practical issues related to measuring feed intake, growth rate has been the basis for indirectly selecting fish for improved feed efficiency since the dawn of the aquaculture industry in Norway in the 1970s. The assumption was that growth correlates with feed utilisation. This is generally true, but

feed efficiency by just “oneImproving per cent would increase annual value by at least 23m euros ”

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growth does not explain everything. The fastest growing fish are not always the most efficient. They may also be the most voracious ones, meaning that they actually make poor use of their feed. In addition to high feed costs, voracious fish also contribute to a high level of nitrogen and phosphorous excretion in the sea, and thus have a negative impact on the environment. Dvergedal has now successfully documented genetic variations in feed efficiency in Atlantic salmon by measuring the utilisation of nutrients from the feed in body tissues. The results show that some fish are indeed more efficient in converting nutrients into muscle; in effect, they are better body-builders. ‘Growth alone can only explain around 60 per cent of the variation in feed efficiency. By adding nutrient metabolism to the picture, we can explain almost 80 per cent of the variation. That’s a huge leap,’ said Dvergedal. Jørgen Ødegård, a senior scientist at AquaGen and an associate professor at NMBU, has been working closely with Dvergedal during her studies, and originally proposed that she find a way to measure individual feed efficiency without registering feed intake. ‘This new method may enable us to identify parent fish in our breeding population that display a particularly high feed efficiency, allowing us in turn to enhance this trait in the eggs that we sell to our customers,’ said Ødegård. Global potential Enhancing the feed efficiency of farmed fish and farm animals is one of the main pillars of Foods of Norway’s research, in addition to the development of novel, sustainable feeds. For the global salmon farming industry, the potential for reducing feed costs, increasing feed resource efficiency and minimising environmental impact is substantial. FF


02/07/2019 12:37:10

Processing News

Scottish Sea Farms bins the plastic

Seachill plans more processing jobs

Salmon farmer wins M&S innovation award for eco friendly packaging boxes have been replaced as a result, saving an estimated 4,100 tonnes of CO2. Commenting on the Innovation Award, Scottish Sea Farms’ processing manager, Donald Buchanan, said: ‘Ensuring that we’re operating in the most ethical and environmentally sustainable way is a key objective both for M&S, with its industry leading Plan A, and for Scottish Sea Farms. ‘This latest collaboration takes us another Above: Scottish Sea Farms’ processing team with the new bulk bins step forward in our usable bulk bins would drive to reduce the porting fresh produce SCOTTISH Sea Farms not only eliminate such as fish, owing to has been recognised use of plastics in our its lightweight insulat- more plastic, but it at the M&S Select activities and has been would also significant- made possible thanks ing properties which Farm Awards 2019 for ly reduce the carbon preserve temperature its innovative work to to the support and coused: from producand quality. reduce polystyrene, operation of the entire tion, processing and However, as a single one of the most widely supply chain.’ use packaging solution transport, through to used plastics. Head of Agriculture washing and recycling. and Fisheries at M&S, with limited options As the exclusive Following extensive supplier of M&S farmed for recycling, EPS is Steve McLean, said: trials to research, test ‘We are committed to not without an envisalmon, Scottish and identify the best ronmental footprint. Sea Farms has been producing food as susmodel, along with A study commisworking with the major tainably as possible, sioned by Scottish Sea significant investment so it is heartening to UK retailer to reduce Farms and undertaken in new equipment and hear about a project the use of expanded processes, Scottish Sea like the one launched by the Caledonian polystyrene (EPS) Environment Centre at Farms first introduced by Scottish Sea Farms packaging. bulk bins to M&S deliv- to move away from EPS Glasgow Caledonian For many years, EPS eries in June 2017. has been the preferred University found that packaging and reduce To date, more than replacing EPS boxes packaging solution their carbon footprint. with returnable and re- 780,000 polystyrene among those trans‘The business has

Another step forward

Ensuring that we’re operating in the most ethical and environmentally sustainable way is a key objective

remained committed to their initial idea over several years and invested significantly into the project. ‘All of this hard work has now paid off and they have successfully established a new way to transport harvested fish in a far more environmentally friendly way.’ Scottish Sea Farms is now exploring new eco-friendly packaging solutions for its export customers, along with diverting potential waste into valuable by-products – for example, by capturing and re-using omega rich blood in animal feed and selling viscera for use in agricultural fertiliser.

Processors face higher prices on quota cuts tonnes, while the plaice catch limit is being FISH processors in the UK face the prospect of set at a little under 7,000 tonnes. sharply higher haddock prices later this year Even with the small increase in cod after Iceland’s large cut in catch quotas. catches, these latest limits are likely to hit Fisheries minister Kristján Þór Júlíusson has the earnings of the Icelandic fleet and may announced a 28 per cent reduction in the well lead to more conventional fishing haddock quota to just under 41,000 tonnes companies moving into salmon farming to for the new fishing year, which begins on compensate for any shortfall. September 1. It was reported last week that exports of Seafood processors and fish friers in the UK Icelandic farmed salmon have increased by are among the largest buyers of Iceland had71 per cent in the first four months of this dock, and prices have already risen by at least Above: Kristján Þór Júlíusson year. Many seafood processors in the UK 16 per cent following quota cuts in the Barents are now turning away from cod and haddock, replacing them Sea, another major Nordic fishing area, last year. with cheaper species such as Alaskan pollack and VietnamThe minister said that growth rates for the 2014 year hadese tilapia, advertised simply as ‘white fish’. dock class, which should be now reaching maturity, had not The cod stock in the northern North Sea is reported to be come up to expectations. in a poor condition and a quota cut of 70 per cent is being But the better news is that the quota for cod, also a British favourite, will be raised by three per cent to just over 272,000 proposed for next year.


Processing News.indd 66

SEACHILL, the big Grimsby seafood processing company, is hoping to create another 200 jobs over the next year as the business appears to go from strength to strength. The processor, which already employs 1,500 people in the town, has taken on an extra 200 people in the past 12 months. It could double that figure following some important contracts with retailers such as Tesco and Waitrose. However, managing director Simon Smith has told local MPs and business leaders that while growth prospects were good, he wants to see improved transport links to the company’s two factory sites, which are off the main bus routes. Grimsby MP Melanie Onn said she plans to talk to the bus operator, Stagecoach, and the council to address the problem. Seachill is now part of the Hilton Food group, which said recently it was pleased with the performance of its £80 million acquisition, purchased from its former Icelandic owners almost two years ago. It plans further investment in its Grimsby operation, also home to the Saucy Fish brand.

02/07/2019 12:45:39

Processing News

Marel unveils new salmon scanner THE international seafood processing equipment company Marel has introduced a new scanner, which it claims acts as an efficient and accurate device for checking the quality of salmon fillets after filleting, trimming, and skinning. The Icelandic company aims to give salmon processors the benefit of monitoring and registering the quality of products, allowing them to grade and sort them according to individual criteria or customer specifications. Marel said its QC scanner works through a 2D vision camera, which rapidly scans the surface of each fillet and detects melanin and blood spots, trimming and skinning defects, and levels of brown meat. It can also identify the colour of selected areas to colour grade the fillets according to industry standards. A 3D vision camera then estimates the fillet weight by measuring volume. This feature can be used to indicate the yield trend, which helps determine when the filleting machine needs adjusting. Marel said: ‘All settings are easily adjusted on the scanner’s user friendly colour touchscreen. Programmes with different tolerances can be stored so that settings can be changed quickly and easily. ‘The QC scanner is available with a single or dual-gate system to sort fillets for rework or to meet certain quality criteria. ‘With the dual-gate system, you can sort fillets onto a conveyor while simultaneously pushing others to the side for manual rework. ‘Information about quality is collected in real time and stored in the Innova database, so you can analyse, sort the material, quality grade and optimise the quality process.’ Meanwhile, Marel is hosting a European processing event, the Whitefish ShowHow, in the Danish capital Copenhagen on September 25. The company said: ‘By bringing industry leaders together under the

Above: The Marel QC scanner

same roof with equipment and software specialists, the event is also expected to generate the conversations and innovations that will continue to shape the future of processing in coming years.’ Marel said demonstrations will run all day, showing visitors how its equipment and software can ensure processors better utilise the raw material, to reduce processing time and to increase traceability. ‘In addition to the live demonstrations, visitors will be invited to experience cutting edge innovation and technology via virtual reality,’ the company added.

Site Technician AquaGen is the world’s leading supplier of genetics to the global salmonid aquaculture industry. We have recently acquired production facilities at Dumfries, where a significant capital investment is now underway to produce salmon eggs for the Scottish and export markets. In line with our infrastructure development we are looking to expand our workforce with the recruitment of a site technician. The ideal applicant will have some hands-on aquaculture experience with a positive and open personality. This is a great opportunity to join a new team at an exciting, early stage of development. The role is “hands-on” and will involve a wide range of tasks, from general fish husbandry to technical aspects of salmon reproduction and, for the right applicant can be the start to a rewarding, interesting and varied career path in a global business. Full training in technical aspects will be given. In return the successful applicant will benefit from a comprehensive and competitive package of remuneration, company pension and insurance benefits. To apply: Please submit a covering letter and C.V. to before 12th July 2019 For further information or to discuss the opportunity in confidence, please contact our Managing Director Andy Reeve,, Read more about AquaGen at

Processing News.indd 67


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02/07/2019 12:47:55

Opinion – Inside track

Too little too late BY NICK JOY


UST for the record, I am not a supporter of Boris Johnson. I am sure that this will ensure that he is never prime minister – well, maybe not. Anyway, it may have come to your notice that he had a row with his girlfriend, which got taped by a neighbour with a grudge and played to the press. The feeding frenzy which followed was the sort of hoolie that is normal in an American presidential election, but not in our country. Yet it seems patently obvious to me that the whole thing could have been averted or even turned to Boris’ advantage had he reacted fast to the story. A statement which said: ‘However much you love someone, sometimes they get on your nerves. Almost all couples have rows now and then and it is a normal but difficult part of life. What is not normal is to use your grudge to tape your neighbours and use it to attack them in public! My poor partner has suffered enough etc etc’ I hope you get the picture. From being a boor who has rows, he would now be the injured party trying to protect his lovely girlfriend. Forgive the long lead in but this is precisely the sort of issue that salmon farming has faced over the years. We have habitually avoided proactive PR and proactive work with government bodies to deflect bad situations arising. We have often known that trouble was coming, whether it be about sea lice numbers or the amount of marine protein in our diets. In each case, we have studiously stuck our heads in the sand and hoped that it would all go away. In the end, we always look like we are hiding things and the press have a field day and our critics get a stronger voice. Let me give an example; some years ago, the industry was warned that there would be an attack on our use of medicines. Cue outrage that we were going to be criticised despite the fact that we had reduced our use of these legally approved substances. Faced with this, I sat down and analysed our medicine use. I discovered that if we took the active ingredients and compared them to paracetamol use in humans, the dosage used annually would not have been enough to treat one headache a year! We wrote our own PR in those days, so I sat down and wrote the piece, had it checked by a reputable scientist and sent it out to all of our customers. I knew full well that it would get to the press somehow and it did but the articles were not written about us. Reacting quickly to potential stories works! Proactive PR and groundwork are necessary to improve our image, and I have noticed that we are getting better at it. Nonetheless, there are areas which need attention. Many moons ago I tried to persuade the industry to work with the Marine Conservation Society on the issue of marine protein. Sadly, I could not get enough support and so we worked with MCS on our own. This led, in time, to us working directly with fishmeal suppliers and the good news stories developing from that. One of the biggest issues we face now is the supply of


Nick Joy.indd 70

We have “habitually

avoided proactive PR to deflect bad situations arising

wrasse. Despite the amazing developments in farming wrasse, we still fish for large numbers at sea. I am immensely proud of the work the Loch Duart team have done to work with authorities in England to develop wrasse fishing guidelines and legislation. What amazes me is that no one is doing this in Scotland. Are we really incapable of seeing what the authorities will be forced to do sooner or later? Surely we would be better to organise and work with them to ensure that future fishing is truly sustainable. In the end, if we don’t, we will be back to being blamed for a decline when we could be the ones getting the accolades for working with the authorities before we had a significant impact on wild stocks. Let’s not be like our future potential prime minister, for a change. FF

02/07/2019 12:50:21



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Profile for Fish Farmer Magazine

Fish Farmer Magazine July 2019  

Serving Worldwide Aquaculture Since 1977

Fish Farmer Magazine July 2019  

Serving Worldwide Aquaculture Since 1977