$180 million salmon farm gets the go-ahead to start building immediately

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Maine’s Whole Ocean’s clears last hurdle receiving its final building permit on Monday.

The race is on to get Maine’s first land-based salmon farm up and ready for harvest.

Whole Ocean’s planned USD 180 million salmon farm at the former Verso Paper mill site, Bucksport, Maine, received its Site Location and Development Act permit from the state, reports Bangor Daily News.

The permit is the last of nine local, state and federal approvals the project required, the publication reported.

Illustration of new facility. PHOTO: Whole Oceans

This means that construction on the 50,000 tonne-per-year Atlantic salmon recirculating site and processing plant is free to start immediately.

Though construction of buildings on the 22 acres site is likely not start until the spring 2020.

The company – which has seem through has had three different bosses since 2018 – celebrated the benchmark on Facebook.

“We want to say thank you to everyone who has supported us and worked with us over the past two years to help this project come to fruition. It would not have been possible without you,” it wrote.

Construction of the farm is expected to finish in 2022, with the first batch of 5 kilo salmon expected to be grown and sold by 2024, with an expectation to capture 10% of the U.S. Atlantic salmon market. It has already has pre-sold 100% of its total production for the next 10 years.

Rival RAS salmon farmers Nordic Aquafarms is building a 33,000 tonne RAS salmon farm in the state of Maine in Belfast, USA, with the first phase targeted for completion in 2021.