Brazil signs huge offshore fish farm deal

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Forever Oceans, a US-owned company, has signed a deal with the Brazilian Government to create the world’s largest offshore fish farm.

The area being talked about is in the coastal state of Bahia in north east Brazil, and covers more than 160,000 acres (64,200 hectares), an area three and a half times the size of Washington DC.

The fish to be farmed will be amberjack (Seriola Rivoliana), a species common to that part of the world that is said to be rich in Omega-3 and makes for excellent eating. It is known locally as “olho de boi” or remeiro.

Agreement was reached when Bill Bien, the CEO of Forever Oceans met with Jorge Self Jr, Brazil’s Aquaculture and Fisheries Secretary.

An announcement said the deal puts Brazil on track to be an emerging leader in sustainable seafood production.

The initial 20-year agreement authorises Forever Oceans to raise fish in the ocean within automated enclosures in two zones, located between four and nine miles off Bahia.

It is thought to be the largest offshore concession ever given for sustainable marine aquaculture and is predicted to create around 500 jobs over the next eight years.

Jorge Self Jr said: “With a coastline of more than 8,500 km, Brazil is one of the main frontiers for fish production, generating, in addition to healthy food, employment and income.

“This landmark agreement is historic for Brazil and will set the country on the path to the development of sustainable marine aquaculture.”

CEO Bill Bien said: “This agreement will help us to serve the growing demand for delicious, nutritious seafood and gives us the space to scale and grow rapidly, and the opportunity to develop the largest offshore sustainable seafood capability in the world,”

He added: “We will bring our different approach to the waters of Brazil, applying our expertise in aquaculture, conservation and innovation to raise delicious and protein-rich fish in deep-ocean waters in a highly environmentally-friendly and sustainable way that’s good for people and the planet.”

Forever Oceans operates in Hawaii, Virginia, Indonesia, Brazil and Panama.

(From Left) John Lopes, President Jair Bolsonaro, Secretary of Aquaculture and Fisheries Jorge Seif Júnior, and Minister of Citizenship Mr. Joao Roma holding the signed contract.

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