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Pure Salmon to build on-land farm in southern Africa

Pure Salmon intends to build a £200m salmon RAS facility in Lesotho's Butha-Buthe Highland region. Photo: Pure Salmon.
Pure Salmon intends to build a £200m salmon RAS facility in Lesotho's Butha-Buthe Highland region. Photo: Pure Salmon.

Pure Salmon has announced a new 20,000-tonne RAS facility in the African kingdom of Lesotho, an enclaved independent country completely surrounded by the territory of South Africa. 

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Located in the Butha-Buthe Highland region, the US$250 million (£201m) farm will be developed in partnership with the Lesotho National Development Corporation (LNDC) and is predicted to have annual revenues accounting for 8% of the country’s GDP.

In a press release, Stephane Farouze, board director of Pure Salmon and chairman and founder of 8F Asset Management – Pure Salmon’s parent company – said: “Not only is Lesotho one of the most dramatically beautiful countries in the world, the Highlands are also the source of some of the purest natural water reserves in the world. This directly complements the Pure Salmon pledge to deliver sustainable Atlantic Salmon, free of microplastics, antibiotics, pesticides and other contaminants. 

Increased opportunities

“Through our partnership with the LNDC and investment in the Lesotho site, we hope to provide increased opportunities for the local community through the production of sustainable salmon. Whether that’s providing new jobs, offering training opportunities in the aquaculture industry or contributing to the LNDC’s commitment to diversify the country’s agriculture industry, we look forward to bringing this project to fruition.”

The agreement for the project was signed by LNDC chief executive Mohato Seleke, in the presence of the Lesotho government’s finance, trade and water ministers.

Seleke said: “I sincerely believe this partnership will yield tremendous results for Lesotho as a whole. The Pure Salmon product is a high-end consumable and Lesotho boasts the perfect conditions for producing it. It is for this and numerous other reasons that we are engaging in this agreement with Pure Salmon and 8F.”

‘Lower costs’

The announcement follows the company’s ambitious launches with a fully operational facility in Poland jointly owned with Pure Salmon’s technology partner, AquaMaof, and projects under way or planned in Japan, China, Bahrain, the United States and Europe. Pure Salmon aims to produce 260,000 tons of salmon per annum globally.

Each Pure Salmon farm uses AquaMaof’s recirculating aquaculture system (RAS) technology, something which Pure Salmon says will offer a 40% lower cost of production compared to traditional sea-cage farming.  

In May last year, Danish-African company, Cape Nordic Corporation (CNC), signed a deal to build a large-scale on-land trout and salmon farm near Cape Town in South Africa.

CNC said at the time that the location of the plant in South Africa should be viewed in the light of an increased demand for fresh fish on the African markets. Every year Africa imports huge quantities of salmon and trout from Europe, with the annual import of fresh Norwegian salmon alone amounting to several thousand tonnes.

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