Heavy losses for Bakkafrost following high mortality in Scotland

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€23.4 million in losses for October and November.

Bakkafrost struggled with serious biological problems in its fish farming business in Scotland in the third quarter. The biological problems increased at the end of September and continued into the fourth quarter.

In a profit warning issued on Sunday evening, Bakkafrost admitted that extraordinary mortality rates have resulted in a loss of DKK 174.6 million (€23.4 million) in total for October and November, mainly caused by biological difficulties in Scotland.

After write-downs from the extraordinary mortality, EBIT for the Bakkafrost Group in October and November is currently indicated at around DKK 52 million (€7 million).

Read also: A horrible quarter: Bakkafrost shares tumble

The main root-cause for the mortality in Scotland is compromised gill health in
combination with secondary complications, such as blooms of micro-jellyfish/hydrozoans and fish handling during necessary treatments. The overall biological situation improved during November and stabilised further in
December.

The general biological situation is said to have improved during November and stabilized further into December.

As part of a five-year investment program, Bakkafrost will more than triple its freshwater treatment capacity in 2022 with two new wellboats. These vessels are expected to be operational in the second and third quarters of 2022, and will play an important role in reducing gill health issues, thereby improving overall fish health and significantly reducing the risk of mortality caused by secondary complications, the company states.

However, Bakkafrost’s guideline on harvest volume for 2021, at 96,000 tonnes gutted weight, does not change in the profit forecast.