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Salmon Evolution announced today that last Saturday, 26 March 2022, successfully completed the first smolt release at its ground-breaking land-based salmon farming facility at Indre Harøy, Norway. On that day, about 100,000 smolt, with an average weight of around 300 grams, was released. The smolt was supplied by Kraft Laks, Salmon Evolution’s in-house smolt facility acquired in August 2021.

First successful smolt release at Salmon Evolution Indre Harøy facility. Photo: Ane S. Skarvøy, Skarvøy Media.
First successful smolt release at Salmon Evolution Indre Harøy facility. Photo: Ane S. Skarvøy, Skarvøy Media.

“Since we started construction back in May 2020, this is the moment that we all have been waiting for. I am extremely proud of our organization and the fact that we have been able to adhere to our ambitious timeline, even with the challenges faced us during the pandemic”, says Salmon Evolution’s CEO, Håkon André Berg.

Biology in the farm, first company’s priority

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The smolt transportation from Kraft Laks, well known for its long track record in providing first-class smolt to Norwegian salmon farmers, to Indre Harøy was carried out with a live fish carrier. Then, the fish was carefully pumped into the first fish tank. During this process, all relevant fish health parameters were constantly monitored with no negative indicators identified.  After the positive confirmation of the fish transfer process and a customary short adaption period, initial feeding commenced. According to the company, the fish have shown good appetite and the expected behavior.

The smolt was supplied by Kraft Laks. Photo: Ane S. Skarvøy, Skarvøy Media.
The smolt was supplied by Kraft Laks. Photo: Ane S. Skarvøy, Skarvøy Media.

“This is just the beginning. As we now move forward, our number one priority is the biology in our farm. Good biology will improve fish quality and translate into strong growth, which finally will be reflected in the financial performance. With our organization now totalling more than 40 highly skilled employees, I am more confident than ever in our mission – extending the ocean potential”, says Berg.

Next smolt release will be in May

This milestone is the culmination of a testing and commissioning phase that started in December last year. Over the coming months, Salmon Evolution will gradually ramp up production at Indre Harøy, starting with the next release of smolt planned in May. Completion of phase 1 and first harvest are expected for Q4 2022, time from which steady-state smolt release volumes are also awaited.

A member of the Norwegian aquaculture cluster, Salmon Evolution AS is a land-based salmon farmer established in 2017. Located on the west coast of Norway, in Indre Harøy, in the municipality of Hustadvika, its strategic location allows it to adopt a hybrid flow-through system (HFS). With it, it can capture – and replace – large quantities of clean, fresh water from the coast. In other words, the same seawater that has served as the basis for the development of the Norwegian salmon industry for several decades is used here for fish farming on land.

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