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SSF's Slocka farm, Shetland. Adding Grieg Shetland's sites is expected to add 13,000 gwt to SSF's harvest volume next year. Photo: SSF.
SSF's Slocka farm, Shetland. Adding Grieg Shetland's sites is expected to add 13,000 gwt to SSF's harvest volume next year. Photo: SSF.

Scottish Sea Farms co-owner SalMar is projecting that SSF will produce an extra 13,000 gutted weight tonnes of fish next year if its £164 million purchase of Grieg Seafood Shetland’s assets is approved by the UK’s competition watchdog.

That will increase SSF’s harvest by 39% from 33,000 gwt to 46,000 gwt, SalMar said in its report for the third quarter of 2021. As reported by SSF’s other joint owner, Lerøy, last week, SSF has reduced guidance for its 2021 harvest from 36,000 to 33,000 gwt following gill health issues, and is guiding 33,000 gwt for next year, excluding Grieg assets.

SalMar today said that biological challenges, particularly those linked to gill health, had a negative impact on the SSF’s Q3 result, although it still made an operating profit of NOK 597m. The gill health issues also led to the harvesting of fish with a lower average weight, which has affected both cost and price achieved.

SalMar has raised its Norway volume forecast by 6,000 tonnes after a record harvest in Q3. Graphic: SalMar Q3 report.
SalMar has raised its Norway volume forecast by 6,000 tonnes after a record harvest in Q3. Graphic: SalMar Q3 report.

Record Q3 harvest

Meanwhile, SalMar today reported a record high harvest volume of 52,100 gwt and a solid biological and operational performance.

Operational EBIT for the period came to NOK 743 million (£63.3m) for Norway, which equates to NOK 14.95 per kg. Operational EBIT including its subsidiary Icelandic Salmon came to NOK 748m (NOK 14.35 per kg).

SalMar’s Sales and Industry segment had record-high levels of activity at its harvesting and processing plants, though higher costs weakened its result.

SalMar Group made an operational EBIT of NOK 2.037 billion in the first nine months of 2021, compared with NOK 2.594bn in the same period last year.

169,000 tonnes in Norway

The salmon farmer is increasing its volume forecast for 2021 in Norway by 6,000 tonnes to 169,000 tonnes as a result of strong utilisation of higher production capacity. A higher volume is expected to be harvested in 2022: Norway, 175,000 gwt; Iceland, 16,000 gwt; and Scotland, 46,000 gwt (including Grieg Shetland).

SalMar’s new InnovaNor harvesting and secondary processing plant in northern Norway, will go into operation before the end of this year.

Strategic aquisitions

“We are particularly pleased with the results from our fish farming operations in the quarter,” said chief executive Gustav Witzøe. “As always, sound operations on the salmon’s terms combined with our employees’ high level of professionalism is what has made this possible.

“In the third quarter, we have also taken several important strategic steps that will enable SalMar to continue growing. We have made strategic acquisitions in the value chain, we are about to complete our new harvesting and processing plant in Northern Norway, and we have embarked on a partnership with Aker which will strengthen our offshore fish farming activities.”