“Our sales nearly trebled during the lockdown”

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UAE land-based salmon farm was visited by Sheikkh Mohammed Bin Rashid.

Last year, SalmonBusiness reported that the United Arab Emirates based land-based fish farm had completed its first salmon harvest.

Following an exclusivity arrangement with Middle East retail chain Spinneys – who themselves have a licensing concession with Waitrose, the fish is destined for the the premium organic market. Atlantic salmon is the second most eaten fish in the UAE.

The site recently hosted Sheikkh Mohammed Bin Rashid, his son the Crown Prince Sheikh Hamdan as well as the Minister of Food Security Mariam bint Mohammed Saeed Hareb Al Muhairi.

Sheikkh Mohammed Bin Rashid. PHOTO: Government Dubai Media Office

Fish Farm Business Development Manager Edmund Broad told SalmonBusiness that since the pandemic hit the import reliant country, its sales has gone up dramatically. Currently it produces 3,000 tonnes of fish annually but this is likely to go up with demand.

“Our sales nearly trebled during the lockdown. Bass bream and salmon. We have managed to keep a steady supply locally when the reduction in cargo space from Scandinavia and Turkey (salmon & bass/bream respectively) has almost dwindled to nothing,” said Broad.

“The CEO (Bader bin Mubarak .ed) is excited to have hosted Sheikkh Mohammed Bin Rashid and his son the Crown Prince Sheikh Hamdan and also, not quite to widely reported, but the Minister of Food Security also was there as ours is a key asset to show what clever tech can achieve here in the UAE,” he added.

The farm is built in an existing building, and the fish bred in a controlled environment in a recirculation aquaculture system (RAS) – all from AKVA group.

In a press release around the visit Sheikkh Mohammed Bin Rashid said: “Food is a strategic commodity and we look to young Emiratis to propose new ideas and projects to help further enhance food production. We have a clear strategy and sufficient resources to achieve our objectives. We are confident that we can generate practical solutions to achieve self-sufficiency.”