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Steen-Hansen has been developing copper-free anti-fouling products. Photo: Steen-Hansen
Steen-Hansen has been developing copper-free anti-fouling products. Photo: Steen-Hansen

Anti-fouling products maker Steen-Hansen has been awarded NOK5.7 million (£520,000) from Innovation Norway to develop industrial production of new and more environmentally-friendly fish farming net protection products.

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Bergen-based Steen-Hansen, which has a presence in Scotland, Chile, and the Mediterranean as well as Norway, said the financial support is based on a holistic approach to the issue of biofouling, with a focus on reducing the environmental footprint, improving fish health and increasing net protection.

Stig Fagerlid: Greater processing requirements
Stig Fagerlid: Greater processing requirements

“Steen-Hansen has long worked purposefully towards developing even more efficient and environmentally friendly products,” said the company’s plant manager, Stig Fagerlid.

“Our new, innovative products have far greater processing requirements than traditional net impregnation, and the financial support from Innovation Norway will play an important role in being able to achieve industrial production of these desired products.”

The project also looks at the entire life-cycle of net use; from impregnation products, their correct application, the traceability of products, to the re-use of packaging.

Steen-Hansen said that among other things the innovation project will provide fish farmers with a foundation for evaluating the environmental impact on their own locality through strategic choices for keeping net pens free of fouling.

Tore Alfheim:
Tore Alfheim: "We are excited about the future."

The goals of the project include a major reduction in copper emissions combined with longer protection time in the sea.

“Steen-Hansen has demonstrated that it takes environmental challenges regarding the use of net impregnation seriously, for example by using copper-free and copper-reduced products, as well as having its own recycling unit for transport packaging,” said Tore Alfheim, senior advisor at Innovation Norway.

“They submitted a strong application for a logical continuation of this strategy, and we are excited about the future.”

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