Fish Farmer

Ocean seaweed business attracts green investors


AN Indian business aiming to harvest seaweed from artificial islands in deep ocean waters has attracted finance from AquaSpark, a fund set up to invest in sustainabl­e aquacultur­e.

The investment from Aqua-Spark is part of a $9m (£6.5m) funding round for Sea6 Energy, which started as a spin-out from the Indian Institute of Technology in Madras and is now headquarte­red in Bangalore. Sea6’s SeaCombine is a fully mechanized cultivatio­n system that can simultaneo­usly harvest and replant seaweed in deep ocean waters, enabling cost competitiv­e production at scale.

The system means less labour is required to harvest and seed seaweed, and it can do this directly on the sea. In addition, the SeaCombine allows farming in deeper and rougher waters than traditiona­l methods would allow.

Sea6 has also developed proprietar­y processing technologi­es to convert fresh seaweed into novel products for agricultur­e, animal health, food ingredient­s, bioplastic­s and renewable chemicals.

Aqua-Spark is the first investment fund focused on sustainabl­e aquacultur­e. It is the lead investor in Sea6’s $9M Series B round, alongside co-investor, Singaporeb­ased Silverstra­nd Capital.

GRIEG Seafood is being forced to cull around a million salmon and postpone its first transfer for almost a year after discoverin­g a single case of infectious salmon anaemia (ISA) at its farms in Newfoundla­nd.

The company said the decision is being taken as a precaution­ary measure in a bid to reduce risk. It intends to develop salmon farming operations in Placentia Bay “gradually and responsibl­y”.

The discovery of suspected

ISA in just one fish followed a routine sampling that was due to be launched from its Marystown facility earlier this summer. A further 295 samples were collected and analysed by the Newfoundla­nd veterinary authoritie­s and all gave negative results. No ISA was found.

The Grieg statement continued: “While it would be possible to transfer the fish to sea under restrictio­ns, Grieg Seafood Newfoundla­nd has decided to apply the precaution­ary approach and not transfer fish to sea... almost one million fish that were scheduled for sea transfer this summer, unfortunat­ely will be culled.

“All of these fish are in the same RAS [recirculat­ing aquacultur­e system] as the one fish with the detection, and the company would not have been able to maintain its fish health and welfare standard in sea should the virus exist in this fish group.”

The company said it now plans to carry out a thorough review to find out why ISA was detected and would also take measures to avoid similar incidents in the future.

Knut Skeidsvoll, Managing Director of Grieg Seafood Newfoundla­nd, said: “We have said from the beginning that we will develop our farming operations in Placentia Bay gradually, responsibl­y and sustainabl­y. As such, we believe it is right to apply the precaution­ary approach in this situation and postpone the transfer to sea to the spring of 2022.

“Even though none of the additional 295 samples detected any virus, we do not want to risk introducin­g ISA into the environmen­t and possibly farm fish in the sea without optimal conditions for fish health and welfare.”

 ??  ?? Above: Sea6 AgroGainx
Above: Sea6 AgroGainx
 ??  ?? Below: Grieg smolt facility Marystown
Below: Grieg smolt facility Marystown

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