Illustration of the Atacama Yellowtail SpA (AYT) RAS fish farm which AquaMaof will build in Chile. Image: AquaMaof.

AquaMaof to build kingfish RAS facility in Chile

Recirculating aquaculture systems (RAS) specialist AquaMaof has signed a contract with Atacama Yellowtail SpA (AYT), for the construction of an on-land yellowtail kingfish (Seriola lalandi) farm in the Coquimbo region of Chile, which is around 250 miles north of the capital, Santiago.

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With an initial investment of US $25 million, the project will produce 900 tonnes per year of yellowtail in the first stage and double capacity to 1,800 tonnes in the second stage.

AquaMaof, based in Tel Aviv, Israel, said the signing was the result of dedicated work and effort by itself, AYT and Inno-Sea, AquaMaof’s partner in Chile and Latin America. It is AquaMaof’s first contract in Chile.

Strategically important

“We are honoured to have signed this contract with AYT, and grateful for the great efforts of our local partner Inno-Sea in making it happen,” said AquaMaof sales director Roberto Tishler.

“This project is strategically important for AquaMaof in Chile. We look forward to working with AYT to supply the most upscale markets with high-quality yellowtail kingfish.”

Jorge Urrutia, general manager of AYT, said: “This first RAS facility is a major part of the company’s vision to establish a sustainable commercial production of the highest-quality yellowtail kingfish. We strongly believe in and trust the AquaMaof RAS technology, which is integrated and operational in facilities around the world.”

The project will be located in Tongoy Bay.

50 jobs

“In addition to deploying the latest recirculation technology and processes, the Atacama Yellowtail project will create approximately 50 new jobs, enabling the communities of Tongoy and Puerto Aldea to train in and develop economic activities different from those traditionally available to them,” said Urrutia.

“This is one of the objectives of AYT - to deliver a sustainable industrial activity that provides decent jobs, with employment security and permanent training.”

AquaMaof and Inno-Sea are to participate in this project as shareholders. Construction of the facility is expected to begin during the second half of 2022, delivering the first harvests to the market in Q4 of 2024.

AYT is a joint venture between private investment fund Best Potential (supported by state investor CORFO), FDU, Inno-Sea SpA, AquaMaof and Aleta SpA. The JV was initially created to develop the cultivation of yellowtail kingfish as part of efforts to cultivate more species in the Chilean aquaculture sector.