Switzerland’s first salmon farm, Swiss Alpine Fish AG, has secured its ova requirements for five years through a long-term agreement with Benchmark Genetics. The agreement also includes technical support and knowledge transfer from Benchmark.
Swiss Alpine Fish is currently producing about 600 tons of Atlantic salmon in a land-based RAS facility in Lostallo, the Italian-speaking region of the country. Every year, they import six batches of ova from Benchmark Genetics Iceland that they grow to a harvest size of about 3.5 kg. A proportion of the salmon is further processed and smoked in a traditional process by the company. The rest is distributed as fresh. The products are branded as SWISS LACHS and marketed to demanding Swiss consumers.
Experiencing increased demand from the market, Swiss Alpine Fish is due to expand its facility, thereby increasing its genetic needs for eggs yearly by 2026/2027. Security of supply is of key importance to the company, resulting in a contractual agreement with Benchmark. The eggs will be delivered from the new incubation center in Vogar, Iceland, to be officially opened in August 2022.
Kuno Jung, general manager of Swiss Alpine Fish AG, said that “the SWISS LACHS brand has a special position in the local market. We are dependent on suppliers that understand our business and the need for continuity of supply, quality and biosecurity. Our long-standing collaboration with Benchmark has been one of the factors behind the successful growth of our business, and the signing of the agreement demonstrates our wish to continue developing the relationship.”
Commercial director of Benchmark Genetics, Geir Olav Melingen, said that “the Swiss Alpine Fish team is all very professional and experienced individuals within the Atlantic salmon land-based segment, making it a true pleasure working with them. Continuing our long-term partnership is a commitment from both parties to making the land-based segment succeed and face the main challenges together.”