Can farming technology become an important and independent future industry for Norway?
NCE Aquatech Cluster has reached a significant size. The cluster organisation has now received more than 120 partners, including farmers, technology providers and research and education institutions. The partner list includes players such as SalMar, Steinsvik, AquaGen, AKVA group, Mørenot and NTNU.
NCE Aquatech Cluster Senior Manager and former Deloitte consultant Kristian Henriksen believes farming technology on its own will establish a comprehensive export-driven business in the years to come.
Henriksen envisages farming technology exports to be worth EUR 7 billion by 2030.
“This is more than what Norway exports in salmon a year,” said Henriksen during the opening day of the North Atlantic Seafood Conference in Bergen. “This is a goal,” he emphasised.
One of the major industrial companies that have signed up as a supplier to the Norwegian aquaculture industry is the German giant Siemens.
Torill Østingsen, representing a company that annually invests EUR 5.6 billion in research and development, said: “140 years ago, our founder, Werner von Siemens, stated: ‘I do not want to sell the future for short-term profit.’ We do not just need new technology, the technology must also be sustainable,” she emphasised.
Historically, Siemens has focused on electrification.
“Now we focus on what we call “smart” electrification, and with “smart” we mean digitisation. To improve the processes. And now we are currently working on transferring this to the aquaculture industry,” Østingsen continued.
She particularly emphasised the electrification of Nordlaks’ “Havfarm 1” which SalmonBusiness recently reported on when Siemens secured the electrical and automation contract to ensure clean energy for the 385-meter-long farming vessel.
Østingsen concluded with another quote from Werner von Siemens: “Ideas alone have little value. The value of an innovation lies in the practical implementation.”