Legislative changes in Russia now make it possible to transport fresh fish from Europe to Asia through the transcontinental country.
“It is a huge breakthrough”, said Micael Blomster, one of the persons behind the project to the Norwegian newspaper Fremover.
“Russia has just changed the laws for fish transport and other foods by truck and train. Now they allow containers of fish to enter Finland and being shipped out again in Kazakhstan. The new laws will open up completely new opportunities for transporting goods between Narvik (in Northern Norway) and China,” said Blomster.
Blomster works together with Finnish Kouvola Innovation to increase the flow of goods between China and the Finnish city of Kouvola, and according to him, Ofotbanen, Narvik and the ice-free Atlantic harbour are an important piece to make this happen.
According to Blomster the law change is “a major breakthrough”. He believes the first containers with salmon from Northern Norway to Narvik can be shipped before Christmas.
“At this point we are not talking about any separate train, but that we connect to existing transport solutions from Narvik, via Boden, Haparanda/Tornio and to Kouvola where we have regular departures to and from Xi’an,” said Blomster, who added it would the transport would take around two weeks from Norway to China.
Technology from BluWrap should ensure that the fish stays fresh all the way.
According to BluWrap the company uses “its patented, oxygen management techniques to create and maintain an all-natural, controlled atmosphere environment that suspends time so that fresh fish and other proteins can be transported virtually anywhere in the world without the need for ice, environmentally harmful polystyrene, or expensive airfreight.”
“The law change in Russia is what we have been waiting for. As soon as we have all the necessary permits in place, we will carry out the test transport. We must be realistic and realize that this can take some time, but by Christmas, this should be possible,” said CEO of BluWrap, Ola Strand.