Demolition work has begun at Atlantic Sapphire's blaze-damaged RAS facility in Denmark.

Atlantic Sapphire demolishes blaze wreckage in ‘new beginning’ for site

Denmark facility holds immense potential for potential buyers, says co-founder


Land-based salmon farmer Atlantic Sapphire has begun demolishing fire-damaged infrastructure at its former recirculating aquaculture system (RAS) facility at Hvide Sande near Ringkjøbing in Denmark as it looks to sell the property and the fish farm licences that go with it.

The fire occurred in September 2021 and led to the deaths of all the fish in the facility. It is not known how the blaze started.

“We are thrilled to share that the long-awaited process of tearing down the burnt buildings in Denmark has finally begun,” said Atlantic Sapphire co-founder and advisor Thue Holm in a post on LinkedIn today. “This marks a new beginning for our site, and we are eager to explore new possibilities for the space.

“Despite the unfortunate circumstances, the site still holds immense potential with its warehouse, workshop, complete smolt systems, offices, 2000m³ buffer tank, effluent system, and 4.2MW cooling system.

Skilled labour

“Our hope is to find a new project for this location, and the good news is that constructing RAS is cheaper in Denmark compared to Norway and many other countries. Additionally, the location boasts excellent infrastructure, skilled labour, and reliable suppliers, making it an ideal place for companies looking to develop RAS in Europe.”

In May last year Atlantic Sapphire announced that an insurance settlement for the blaze had been successfully concluded and that it had agreed on a cash settlement of DKK 180 million ($25.5m) which would be invested in its salmon RAS in Florida in the United States. It added that would continue to review the company’s strategy for its Danish operations.

The company said the book value of the Denmark facility at the time of the fire was DKK210m (approximately $33m at the exchange rate in September 2021) and the insurance process has identified approximately DKK30m of buildings and equipment that was undamaged by the fire. In addition, Atlantic Sapphire had permits, a long-term land lease and a tax loss carry-forward.

An attractive asset

Speaking during a webcast in August last year, Atlantic Sapphire’s managing director Karl Øystein Øyehaug and chief executive Johan Andreassen said the company was looking to get income from selling the property and licences.

“It also has a long list of permits and a good lease that make it an attractive asset for the right buyer,” said Øyehaug.

“It is almost impossible to get permits for aquaculture in Denmark, so for the right operator I am sure this will be interesting,” added Andreassen.

The Atlantic Sapphire Denmark facility before the blaze.