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AquaGen is expanding into the trout egg market. Photo: IFI
AquaGen is expanding into the trout egg market. Photo: IFI

Salmon egg producer AquaGen has signed a deal to buy 51 per cent of the shares in the Danish-based breeding company AquaSearch ova ApS, a leading suppliers of genetics for the portion-size trout market.

In a press release, the companies said that portion-size trout is one of the fastest growing aquaculture sectors globally and has become an important commodity of animal protein. Production in 2016 was 650,000 tonnes, with annual growth of 5-7 per cent over the last three years.

The statement said AquaSearch ova, established in 2006, is a leading global player in breeding and egg production of trout. It said the Billund-based company has developed a competitive product portfolio with a very cost-effective production and distribution from its six manufacturing facilities in Denmark. A very high level of bio-security enables the company to access all global trout markets.

New platform for growth

Odd Magne Rødseth:
Odd Magne Rødseth: "Strategic milestone." Photo: AquaGen

“Our association with AquaSearch ova represents an important strategic milestone for AquaGen," said AuaGen chairman Odd Magne Rødseth. "With this we get a new platform for growth and value creation, helping AquaGen to maintain and strengthen its commitment to trout breeding. Due to a limited market for large trout, many breeding companies in Europe and Chile have chosen to close down their breeding programs for trout. AquaSearch ova's strong position within the portion-size trout sector completes our commitment to all farmed species of salmon and trout. There is a great potential for AquaSearch ova and AquaGen to gather interesting synergies through exchange of experience, cooperation on R & D and the use of joint technology platforms in the breeding work.”

"This transaction is very positive for the trout industry, because it helps to provide advanced technology and research resources to more trout farmers around the world," said Torben Nielsen, CEO of AquaSearch ova.

"I'm glad that AquaSearch ova will be part of a group that has a long-term commitment to developing and distributing trout genetics. The ability to share leading knowledge and breeding technology within different species will strengthen the development necessary to meet the rapidly growing demand for seafood, and with the global reach of AquaGen and EW Group, we can further develop our global distribution to reach all important trout markets.”