Akva, Cermaq sign €60 million RAS contract

The contract to build a 12-million smolt facility at Sørøya in Finnmark is the largest for Akva in Norway.

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June 6, 2023

Aquaculture equipment and technology supplier, Akva Group, signed a new RAS contract with Cermaq Norway for a 12-million post-smolt facility at Sørøya in Finnmark. The estimated contract value is a minimum EUR 60 million. Engineering and design work will start immediately.

“This contract with Cermaq Norway represents for Akva Group the largest contract in Norway ever and will support the activity level in our Land Based business for the next few years,” said CEO Knut Nesse.

After the initial proposal for salmon ground rent tax was put forward last autumn, Cermaq’s planned, land-based smolt plant was put on hold due to great uncertainty. “The uncertainty surrounding the effect of the chosen tax model and tax level will affect the level of investment, particularly related to growth. The supply of smolt for existing production is, however, a significant bottleneck for current operations. When the land plant is completed, we will be able to cover today's need for smolt, but it does not take into account any increase in production,” said Knut Ellekjær, CEO of Cermaq Norge.

Cermaq will adopt technology that increases biosecurity and fish welfare and thus significantly reduces the risk of disease. On the environmental side, the plant will be Cermaq's most energy-efficient operation.

Production of smolt is expected to start in 2026. “We are now starting the design of the plant and will start groundwork within a short time to prepare the site before winter. This is the first smolt plant Cermaq is building in Western Finnmark and will create 24 new jobs in Hasvik municipality. It will strengthen our business in the region and contribute to more activity in Hasvik municipality,” said Jonassen.