SalMar, which co-owns Scottish Sea Farms, is applying for the site to be approved for a maximum permitted biomass of 19,000 tonnes, which is what the SFF is dimensioned to produce.
In 2019, the SalMar subsidiary MariCulture AS received a commitment for eight development permits for testing the technology in the SFF concept, and it is this facility that is planned to be established on the site, the Norwegian Directorate of Fisheries announced in a statement on Friday.
Norway’s Fisheries Directorate has previously mapped and identified areas that may be suitable for aquaculture at sea, in collaboration with the Institute of Marine Research (IMR).
First open sea application
The locality applied for is on the edge of what the Fisheries Directorate calls Area 11 Frøyabanken nord. The area is located off the Trøndelag coast and is recommended for impact assessment for aquaculture. This is the first time someone has applied for approval of a site for aquaculture in the open sea.
The Fisheries Directorate will process the application as the site is outside the scope of the Planning and Building Act. SalMar’s full 78-page application (in Norwegian) can be downloaded from the Fisheries Directorate website here.
SalMar’s Smart Fish Farm is an evolutionary next step from the company’s Ocean Farm 1, a large-scale salmon cage successfully trialled off the coast of Trøndelag.
Scottish Sea Farms is exploring the possibility of building its own Ocean Farm-style offshore farm and has the backing of co-owners SalMar and Lerøy.