Fish farm waste is a continuous challenge for the aquaculture industry, but one new Scottish company, led by researcher-turned-CEO Dr Georgia Robinson, hopes to change that.
Robinson's company N-ovatio-N™, a spin-out from the Scottish Association for Marine Science (SAMS) and the University of the Highlands and Islands (UHI), utilises marine worms to clean up aquaculture waste.
The company has now been recognised with the prestigious Converge Challenge prize in Glasgow earlier this month, awarded for the company with the greatest growth and innovation potential.
Tackling the issue of organic waste in the aquaculture industry, N-ovatio-N™ takes a scalable biotechnological approach to convert waste into high value, sustainable feed ingredients in the form of marine worms, rich in protein, lipid and omega-3 fatty acids.
The technology is designed to be co-located at aquaculture production facilities in order to deliver circular economy benefits.
According to Robinson, the company's innovative approach enables growing high quality polychaete worms year-round for UK and global export markets. In doing so, the technology creates a circular economy, reducing waste disposal costs and impacts, and creates low-carbon alternate feed ingredients.
Robinson said she was "thrilled" to win the Converge Challenge Award, and that she is looking forward to the next steps in developing the spin-out company.
“I am driving the spin-out of N-ovatio-N™ to deliver impact and help meet Scotland’s Net Zero targets through a circular economy solution that upcycles waste into high value feed ingredients in the form of marine worms," Robinson said.
"Our solution centres around net zero solutions for the Scottish salmon farming sector and global aquaculture industry."
“We will use this cash prize to leverage non-dilutive grant funding to further build our IP portfolio," she added.