Here are Norway’s 10 Largest Smolt Sites

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With 23,550 cubic meters of tub volume, SalMar’s nursery at Follafoss is the country’s largest

With enormous sums thrown in to combat sea lice, many industry players want larger smolt to shorten time spent in the sea alongside salmon’s No. 1 pest.

In Norway, billions of kroner have been put into increasingly large smolt facilities. Older nurseries have been expanded.

“Why have we invested such high sums? Because that how much these buildings cost. We want to bring down marine production times,” Lingalaks manager, Erlend Haugarvoll, told SalmonBusiness. They’re building a smolt facility together with Eide Fjordbruk that’ll hold up to 18,000 m3.

What follows is a cursory survey of the country’s largest salmon nurseries based on conversations with company employees and the totals shown on official Web pages:

  1. SalMar, Follafoss: 23.500 m³
  2. Nova Sea, Helgeland Smolt: 22.200 m³
  3. Sævareid Fiskeanlegg: 22.000 m³
  4. Marine Harvest, Nordheim: 21.500 m³
  5. SalMar, Senja: 17.600 m³
  6. Grieg Finnmark, Adamselv: 15.700 m³
  7. Marine Harvest, Glomfjord: 14.700 m³
  8. Sisomar, Straumen: 13.500 m³
  9. Nova Sea, Sundsfjord Smolt: 13.400 m³
  10. Marine Harvest, Fjæra: 13.000 m³

Leroy investing heavily
While Sævareid Fiskeanlegg grew and obtained a production capacity of 10 million fish and a 200 million (USD 25.7 million) RAS system, Leroy Sjotroll continued construction of its giant Kjaerelva facility in western Norway, a NOK 650 million (USD 83.5 million). Not to be outdone, Marine Harvest’s new facility at Skervoy north of Tromso will cost NOK 400 million (USD 83.5), and a dizzying NOK 600 million (USD 77 million) is the price of SalMar’s Jovika site.

SalmonBusiness used tub volumes as a survey parameter because fish sizes fluctuate from site to site, and because some companies preferred to keep feed volumes confidential.

If we look at facilities being built, then several other facilities would top the list. Based on capacity in the works, these would top the list:

  1. The Nordlaks site on Hamarøy island will go from 3.600 m³ to 29.000 m³ in 2019.
  2. Leroy Sjotroll’s Kjaerelva site will soon boast tank capacity of 24.000m³.
  3. Bremnes Seashore north of Stavanger will see capacity expand from 13.000 m³ to 20.000 m³.
  4. Eide Fjordbruk og Lingalaks aim to add 17.000 m³ in tub volume at Kvinnherad.
  5. Leroy-owned Laksefjord aims to boost volume from 8.500 m³ to 16.000 m³.
  6. Tytlandsvik Aqua (Bremnes Seashore, Vest Havbruk, Grieg Seafood) will be 15.000 m³ when built.

Lingalaks and Eide Fjordbruk are, meanwhile, investing hundreds of millions of dollars at their Aenes nursery in Kvinnherad just south of Bergen. Their water permit in order, they’re just waiting for a license to operate.

“We’ll soon have it. The facility can produce 3,000 tonnes between 6-9 million fish — depending on size — a year,” Haugarvoll said.

Profitable
He said he’s certain about why salmon farmers want to invest in smolt facilities.

“It’ll reduce the risk related to disease and lice. We think there are health advantages and a little increase in production.”

“Larger fish have proven to be profitable for us. We get them to harvest weigh sooner,” said Haugarvoll.