Biological problems hit Grieg’s Q1 profits

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Grieg Seafood has reported a first quarter drop in operating profits, mainly due to biological issues in Norway.

The company produced an EBIT of NOK 385 million (£28.7m) against NOK 453m (£34m) a year ago.

The harvest was down by around 1,500 tonnes to 15,357 tonnes but Grieg expects a much higher output of 21,300 tonnes during the current quarter and 80,000 tonnes for the full year.

Harvest volume in Rogaland was 7,502 tonnes in the quarter (9,645 tonnes in Q1 2022), 2,200 tonnes above guidance due to advance harvesting to reduce biological risk related to infectious salmon anaemia (ISA) at one site and winter ulcers.

In Finnmark, harvest volume was 7,856 tonnes in the quarter (5,175 tonnes in Q1 2022), 2,100 tonnes above guidance due to advance harvesting related to the Spiro parasite (Spironucleus salmonicida) and winter ulcers.

No new incidents of Spiro have been detected at the freshwater facility during the first quarter.

Grieg said to compensate for the advance harvesting in Finnmark, it will increase smolt release for the remainder of the year to rebuild biomass.

However, the initiative is not expected to fully compensate for the lost biomass, and the 2023 harvest target for Finnmark is reduced from 28,000 to 26,000 tonnes.

In British Columbia there was no harvest during the first quarter, which was according to plan to prioritise growing of biomass.

Seawater performance was good during the quarter with stable survival rate at 92%. In Q1 2022 harvest volume in BC was 2,096 tonnes.

Grieg CEO Andreas Kvame

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