Seafarm B.V., a RAS turbot farm located in Zeeland, the Netherlands, is the first aquaculture facility in the world to achieve certification against the new ASC (Aquaculture Stewardship Council) Flatfish Standard.
While turbot farming generally occurs either at sea or in pond systems, Seafarm B.V. adopts a unique approach. Seafarm has been producing farmed seafood for decades, and takes a “whole circle” approach to farming turbot, from breeding to selling the fish in their on-site restaurant. Its innovative recirculating aquaculture system places a strong emphasis on energy efficiency, animal welfare and environmentally friendly practices.
ASC’s Flatfish Standard was developed in response to market demand for species like turbot, halibut and flounder, with total global production of the species covered by the standard estimated at around 200,000 tons per year.
To achieve certification, a flatfish farm has to demonstrate it is limiting environmental impacts such as minimizing chemical use and maintaining high water quality, as well as acting in a socially responsible way by providing workers with a safe and fair working environment and treating neighbors and local communities with respect.
Seafarm takes its environmental and social responsibilities seriously. They take advantage of natural spring water and do not use antibiotics or drugs in their production.
“Receiving the ASC certificate for our ecologic fish farm justifies the philosophy that we’ve adopted for many years here at Seafarm,” said Adri Bout, founder of Seafarm and inventor of the full-circle method of fish farming, which prioritizes fish well-being above all else. I have always believed that a happy fish is a healthy fish. We go to great lengths to ensure the animals’ well-being – for example, we never feed them any antibiotics. We are delighted that ASC recognizes our innovative approach as this means that our fish will be finding their way to consumers and wholesalers more easily.”
Seafarm is currently working on improvements to its energy efficiency and waste disposal with the aim of producing fish using only renewable energy.