March 23, 2018
March 23, 2018
All of us at Nordic Aquafarms have been pleased by the wonderful reception we have received from the Belfast community. We are grateful from to the hundreds of people who came to our announcement in January and our first information meeting a few weeks ago. We are committed to bringing significant investments, exciting new jobs and the highest environmental standards to the Belfast community.
Belfast is certainly an engaged community, which we value, and we look forward to hosting more information sessions as our project progresses. We know that as a newcomer we must earn the community’s trust, and we are committed to being open and transparent about our plans with the community of Belfast. We will do our best to address concerns as we progress.
Over the next few months, as we complete our due diligence on the proposed site and hopefully the local and state permitting process, we will have much more detailed information to share and there will be ample opportunity for public comment on all aspects of the project.
The premise for this continues to be that the community welcomes this project, that the landsite will provide for the needs of the project, and that final permits are achieved.
In the meantime, we can report that there is great interest around the Belfast project in the seafood industry. Earlier in March, we attended the Seafood Expo North America in Boston, one of the largest industry gatherings in the world. We met with many people throughout the industry, internationally as well as from Maine. They are excited about our plans and excited for Belfast and the state of Maine. So are we.
This newsletter is the first monthly newsletter about the Nordic Aquafarm´s project. This information will also be published on our website. Please feel free to share it with friends and neighbors. Interested parties may also subscribe to our newsletters– please find more information on how to subscribe at the end of this newsletter.
Nordic Aquafarms is through its partners in Maine, pursuing assessments of the site as part of the due diligence according to what was communicated and discussed at the Belfast information meeting in February:
Proposed situation plans for the land-site and 3D animation of the facility will be completed in May and will be presented to the community in a public meeting for feedback.
Nordic Aquafarms is committing $4 Mill USD in 2018 to US permitting and development work, to enable a potential construction start in 2019.
Once mapping and accurate dimensioning of the site are clarified, we will move on to final dimensioning of the facility, to be constructed over 2-3 phases in a seven-year timeline.
This work will enable us to finalize discharge figures for the facility. Nordic Aquafarms will be applying the highest environmental standards in the industry for treatment of discharge. We are working with some of the latest cutting-edge environmental technologies; our current verified solutions reduce most of the nutrients in the discharge by 99 percent. This is also a much higher removal rate than current land-based facilities. As an example, one salmon produced in Belfast will produce a discharge of nutrients far off the shore-line that is only one percent of a similar salmon produced in the ocean. And no chemicals, medications or antibiotics will be used. The treated discharge is to be released at least a mile off-shore.
We have a zero-waste strategy. We are currently assessing the best choice for recycling and reuse of sludge from the fish production. This is a high energy waste resource with a value. The final result will either be a small biogass plant or production of a soil enhancement product. Nordic Aquafarms is partnering up with US experts to conclude the best solution for Belfast and Maine.
All cut-off material from the fish processing (heads, insides) will be block-frozen on site and sold as a high-quality protein and omega 3 source. We are now looking at potential US partnerships and customers for this resource.
Land-based farming is recognized as one of the most promising means of protecting wild salmon populations, also by the Monterey Seafood Watch in the US where it has a “best choice” rating. These facilities do not contribute to proliferation of sea lice as these cannot pass through filter systems and are not present in the production tanks. Sea lice is a mortality factor for wild salmon. In the Belfast case, the farming facility will be located at least 500 feet from any waterways and will have multiple barriers for any escape. The chance of any escape is close to zero. Escape is also a challenge for wild salmon populations. Any finally, all water is treated for pathogens, thus greatly reducing the risk of any potential disease spread.
Nordic Aquafarms wishes hopes to combine tourism, recreation, education and promotion of the salmon business in Belfast by creating a visitor center in Belfast on the site.
We are currently working to preserve the existing water district building as for the basis for a a visitor concept center. We are also planning an a seasonal outdoor showcase tank with salmon to show our work.
As we explore this further, we will seek input from the community on how this might be developed into a positive and popular attraction for the community and visitors.
The Belfast project has a high priority within Nordic Aquafarms as an international flagship project. For this reason, plans are now being made for CEO, Erik Heim, to move to Maine to build the business if and when permits are confirmed.
Nordic Aquafarms will take first steps in the local staffing process in the Fall of 2018. We expect to fill 3 management positions as a first step.
Nordic Aquafarms just announced engineering for a step two expansion of our salmon facility in Norway, involving 70 million USD in additional investments. The first phase of the facility will go into production later this year. The land-based salmon industry is still young with very few facilities, and it takes four years from early planning to get fish out the door. Thus all companies in this sector are in an early phase of development. Our local team has over 60 years combined salmon farming experience that also will be brought into development in Maine to create a thriving business in collaboration with partners in Maine.
Our Danish yellowtail kingfish production facility recently announced a global sales agreement for its entire production with the international sales company Nordic Seafood. This operation is the world’s largest land-based kingfish facility, and harvest size fish are now ready for sale. All European salmon sales in the Nordics will move through another international sales partner, Prime Ocean, in Denmark.
We encourage anyone interested in our Belfast project to subscribe to our monthly newsletter. Just send an email to our PR representative, Ted O´Meara, to subscribe. Ted´s email address: firstname.lastname@example.org
Please also note that Nordic Aquafarms has established a web-site dedicated to the Belfast project. This will be updated as more information becomes available at: http://www.nordicaquafarms.com/us-news/
We will maintain information meetings for the Belfast community on a regular basis as we progress in our work and have new information to share.
The next meeting is planned for May. No date has been set yet, but we will communicate further information about this in the April newsletter.