New Zealand King Salmon looks towards Cook Strait for expansion

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Large-scale, long term expansion and submersible pens in the Cook Strait could be a possibility. 

“The water quality is excellent, it’s cold and it’s deep,” Rosewarne said talking to the NZ online publication Stuff.

The CEO has been vocal in his company’s ambitions to moor huge underwater pens in Cook Strait.

The Nelson-based company is looking into submersible technology like those being developed in Norway such as the Ocean Farm concept from Salmar.

New Zealand King Salmon chief executive Grant Rosewarne. PIC New Zealand King Salmon

“We’d have to put a pen out there and see how it stood up against the currents and the weather but if you go down 15 or 20 metres, it’s calm.”

READ MORE: New Zealand King Salmon CEO: “We believe that aquaculture is literally going to save the world

“They’re massive pens, like a skyscraper underwater,” Rosewarne said. Rosewarne added that there was potential to place up to 100 pens in the Strait, each holding 1000 tonnes of king salmon.

“In the last financial year, NZKS had total revenues of $136m. With 100 pens moored in Cook Strait, that could lift to $2.5b” Rosewarne said.

“You’d be looking at about 80ha on the surface for that revenue so there’s a very real real possibility it could become New Zealand’s biggest industry,” he said.

NZKS produces around 8000t – ie 50 percent of the world’s King salmon supply – per year each year from nine sites covering 17 surface hectares in the Marlborough Sounds In the last financial year, the company had total revenues of $136 million.