Atlantic Sapphire harvested 721 tonnes of salmon in three months: “A lost quarter”

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Operational challenges in both the USA and Denmark.

On the same day that it was announced that three people were seriously injured in a workplace accident at Atlantic Sapphire’s Bluehouse outside Miami, the company announced a first-quarter trading update.

Here it is stated that the land-based fish farmer pioneer harvested a total of 721 tonnes of salmon in the quarter, divided into its two facilities in Denmark and the United States. At the same time, it was not hidden that the operation of these two facilities has encountered major challenges so far this year.

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“The March 23 incident plus several smaller fish losses made Q1 2021 a “lost quarter” for biomass growth in the United States,” the report stated. The facility in Denmark also experienced weak growth due to gill damage and “fish movement issues”.

The quarter was so demanding that Atlantic Sapphire presents its own list of challenges.

Heavy loss
This is especially emphasised on the reasons for the “March 23 incident”, in which 500 tonnes of salmon were lost. Shortly after this accident, the company’s COO was replaced. 

On the positive side, the company highlighted that the achieved sale price for superior salmon over three kilograms gave a 90 per-cent price premium compared to the Fish Pool price achieved. The catch, however, was that sales volumes were very low.

Atlantic Sapphire did not disclose financial results for the quarter.

In 2020, pre-tax profit was USD -55.2 million, after a negative operating cash flow of USD 47 million.

The company’s total balance at the end of the year was USD 320.1 million, of which USD 65.5 million was debt.