Monday, April 27, 2015

27/04/2015: EWOS Innovation involved in new salmon research centre

The Norwegian Directorate of Fisheries has granted research permits to the Arctic Salmon Research Centre for the period 2015-2020. The research centre will give knowledge on fish farming in arctic environment in Finnmark, to optimize the ongoing operations and to explore the possibilities for growth in this region.

This centre will be important for the industry’s growth in Finnmark. This northernmost region in Norway has in many ways great conditions for fish farming, but we need more knowledge of the challenging conditions in Finnmark to get production results at the same level as fish farms further south, says a happy Olai Einen, research manager in Cermaq.

New knowledge on arctic conditions
For EWOS, it will be interesting to document new knowledge, together with Cermaq, in relation to fish farming in arctic conditions with lower sea temperatures and big differences in day-time length during the seasons. EWOS has, through research done by EWOS Innovation, good models for the significance of seasonal variations, and can adapt the salmon’s diet for different fish farming areas, says product manager Ernst M. Hevrøy.

To date, we have little systematic research activity on salmon farmed in Finnmark, and EWOS wants to be an important contributor to new, strategic knowledge when it comes to arctic salmon fish farming. In addition, it is important for EWOS to have access to research permits and research units in a very interesting salmon fish farming area.  That trials are done in full-scale fish farming conditions with a natural variation in environment, will give us an extra strength in this research cooperation. We are especially focused on the composition of the feed and its significance to the salmons growth, quality, wellbeing and health, says Ernst.

Unique challenges in the region
Salmon fish farming in Finnmark has had a weaker economic sustainability than fish farming further south. This is due to a longer production period, fish health challenges that are unique for the region, and a bigger variation in product quality.

Arctic Salmon Research Centre will find the causes to these challenges, by studying the significance of feed customized for the fish farming conditions in Finnmark. The trials will be done in full-scale with groups of spring smolt (S1), and autumn smolt (S0) that are kept from smolt to harvest. It has been given to research permits from now, and then two from the summer of 2016. The trials are planned to take place at Cermaqs existing facilities at Kirkneset, Kuvika and Segelsnes in the Hammerfest area.

The relevance of the results will be particularly high, as the trials are done at a practical fish farming scale, and under natural fish farming conditions in Finnmark, says Olai Eining.

The feed is the most important input in fish farming, and we do not know enough about what demands for feed the fish has, to be able to optimize fish farming in arctic areas, says Adel El-Mowafi, managing director of EWOS Innovation.

The arctic environmental conditions with variations in day-time length and low sea temperatures are the basis for the specific goals for the trial period 2015-2020:

  • Optimize growth and feed utilization in salmon by customize protein and energy in the feed to environmental conditions and growth pattern in Finnmark
  • Study the effect of feed with functional ingredients on sore prevention in salmon, and possibly contribute to healing of sores
  • Optimize fatty acids composition to maximize the utilization of essential oils EPA and DHA, and at the same time secure good health and quality in salmon from Finnmark.
  • Optimize pigment contents and antioxidants in feed to reduce problems with (at times) bad pigmentation and file quality
Planned start-up is in June 2015. Results will be shared through visits, lectures and publishing in scientific and popular science.

Visit the EWOS website HERE.

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