Huge loan for Japanese RAS project

aerial view of construction site

The Japanese aquaculture company, Soul of Japan, has secured a huge 33 billion yen loan (£165m) to develop and build a RAS salmon facility in the country.

Soul of Japan (SOJ) said the RAS (recirculating aquaculture system) facility, currently under construction, will be Asia’s largest land-based salmon farm. It will stretch over 135,000 square metres and have a capacity to produce 10,000 tonnes of Atlantic Salmon.

The Tsu plant will be bigger than the Mount Fuji project led by the Norwegian company Proximar Seafood, and reflects Japan’s growing ambition to become a leading producer of Atlantic salmon. Proximar is now close to achieving its first commercial harvest.

SOJ is working with Pure Salmon Technology, which will be providing the advanced RAS system for the plant. The loan is from Sumitomo Mitsui Banking Corporation (SMBC) and the transaction is being supported by 8F Asset Management, an asset manager of private equity funds that also owns the Pure Salmon Group.

The SOJ project will be built at Tsu City in central Japan, close to the large city of Nagoya.

Erol Emed, CEO of Soul of Japan said: “This debt financing allows us to accelerate our growth and contribute to Japan’s food security while minimising our environmental footprint. We are committed to delivering high-quality, locally produced salmon to consumers.”

Karim Ghannam, chief investment officer at 8F Asset Management said: “We are excited to work with SMBC, the banking group and the management teams of SOJ and Pure Salmon to facilitate this transaction that recognises the importance of sustainable aquaculture and its positive impact on Japan’s economy and the environment.”

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