Proximar Seafood has placed the first eggs at its hatchery in Oyama, near Mount Fuji, Japan.
The company said some 125,000 eggs were inserted in this first batch and the ova arrived at the hatchery in excellent condition. The eggs were supplied by Benchmark Genetics from its StofnFiskur breeding programme in Iceland. These have shown great performance in land-based facilities, Proximar said, including AquaMaof’s R&D facility in Poland.
Dharma Rajeswaran, Chief Operating Officer of Proximar, said: “After meticulous preparations, it is wonderful to finally initiate production. The team is ready, the facility is perfect and we have everything we need to provide ideal hatching and growth conditions.
Proximar said the egg insertion marks the starting point for farming of Atlantic salmon in Japan, giving the company a significant first mover advantage. Proximar will insert similar batches into the hatchery each month going forward, enabling continuous harvest from the middle of 2024.
Proximar CEO Joachim Nielsen said: “The moment we have all been waiting for has finally arrived. I see it as a great achievement of our organisation and suppliers to complete the facility in accordance with the ambitious timeline, considering issues such as Covid-19 and global shortage of raw material.”
“The production start is a major milestone for the company and a significant step towards providing the Japanese people with sustainably produced seafood.”
While production has been initiated in the Hatchery and Nursery building, the Post Smolt Grow out facility is still under construction. This is to a large degree repetition of work already undertaken, the company said, adding that it expects the facility to be completed according to schedule.
Earlier this year, Proximar entered into an agreement with one of Japan’s largest distribution companies, the Marubeni Corporation, which has also invested capital in Proximar.