World's first offshore fish farm produced in China supports Norwegian salmon

Updated 2017-12-12 10:32:15 Global Times

The world's first semi-submersible aquaculture support vessel, which was built by the Wuchang Shipbuilding Industry Group Co, has been put into operation in the Norwegian Sea area of Frohavet.

Ocean Farm 1, the world's first deep-sea fish farm, incorporating the most advanced and sustainable technology in fish breeding, was delivered in June, according to the Xinhua News Agency.

It was put into operation by Norwegian fish farming company SalMar ASA, one of the world's top specialists in raising and processing salmon, an employee from Wuchang Shipbuilding told the Global Times on Monday.

As a full-scale pilot facility, Ocean Farm 1 is designed to test the biological and technological aspects of offshore fish farming. Such farms are a response to the world's increasing need for more and healthier food, the SalMar website said.

At the Norway-China Seafood Summit 2017 conference, Sigmund Borgo of the Norwegian Seafood Council (NSC), said the Chinese salmon market grew from 29,000 tons in 2011 to as much as 85,000 tons in 2017, London-based news site undercurrentnews.com reported on Thursday.

By 2025, the NSC expects the Chinese salmon market to be 240,000 tons and for Norway to have a 65 percent share, Borgo was quoted as saying in the report.

Norway has become a large producer and exporter of seafood, benefiting from its superior geographic environment and abundant fishery resources, Sun Juanjuan, a researcher in the Center of Cooperative Innovation for Food Safety Governance at Renmin University of China, told the Global Times on Monday.

Norway's "strict regulations covering the aquaculture industry ensure food security, sound industry development and international competitiveness," Sun said.

The Norwegian aquaculture sector is focused on environmentally friendly and sustainable growth, and its investment in research and development and the application of technologies will facilitate efficiency, she said.

Chinese consumers have concerns about domestically produced food and environmental problems regarding seafood. Thus, there is an increasing appetite for imported food, Sun continued.

Norway will increase its exports of seafood to China to about 10 billion yuan (.5 billion) by 2025, according to a plan jointly launched by the NSC and the China Aquatic Products Processing and Marketing Alliance, note a post on the website of the China Council for the Promotion of International Trade in June.

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