Marubeni to become Proximar’s exclusive distributor for all Atlantic salmon in Japan

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Marubeni Corporation and Proximar Seafood have reached an agreement that Marubeni will be the exclusive distributor in Japan for all the Atlantic salmon produced by the closed recirculating aquaculture system (RAS) which Proximar is constructing in Japan.

“Teaming up with Marubeni is a key part of our partnership strategy and brings us one step closer to supplying fresh salmon to the Japanese market. We now have a sales and distribution partner in Japan with superior market insight and access, reducing risk and increasing pricing power. The agreement with Marubeni provides Proximar significant resources in terms of sales and marketing, and we share the same views in terms of our products’ attractiveness,” Joachim Nielsen, the CEO of Proximar, said.

“Japan’s self-sufficiency rate for fisheries products is only 57 percent, and securing a stable supply of these products is now a social issue due to the rising consumption of these products overseas and increasing geopolitical risks, like pandemic. In this environment, we feel that it is of great social significance to participate in a project to produce Atlantic salmon, which is much preferred by Japanese consumers, here in Japan. Together with Proximar, we will continue to take on the challenge of ensuring a stable supply of Atlantic salmon for Japanese consumers,” Kazunari Nakamura, the General Manager of Marubeni’s Fresh Food Department, added.

The agreement covers sales of all volumes produced by Proximar for the Japanese market and has an initial term of ten years. Both parties will be actively involved in the marketing efforts, with the aim to build a strong premium sustainable seafood brand.

Worldwide demand for salmon is expected to increase due to population growth, the improved dietary quality mainly in emerging economies, and increasing health consciousness in developed countries. However, the supply of wild and sea-farmed salmon is coming to a head in terms of ecosystem protection and the lack of suitable areas for sea-farming. Under these circumstances, the RAS technology is expected to be one way to ensure a sustainable and stable supply of seafood products. In Japan, the demand for Atlantic salmon is growing, and Japanese consumers have a strong preference for freshness and appreciation of local produce. In recent years, consumer awareness related to sustainability has also been increasing.

Marubeni, with its subsidiary Benirei Corporation at its core, has a solid market share in Japan for handling wild and sea-farmed salmon and has invested in Danish Salmon in Denmark, one of the world’s largest RAS-based Atlantic salmon producers, since April 2020.