An illustration of the proposed Baring facility and, inset, Thor Hushovd during a cycling career that included a world road race championship and stage wins in the Tour de France.

Norway cycling great Hushovd invests in land-based salmon farm

Fish farming 'is an exciting and forward-looking industry in which I have great faith', says former world champion


Former world champion cyclist Thor Hushovd has invested in a project to build a land-based salmon farm in Norway, reports Fish Farming Expert's Norwegian sister site, LandbasedAQ.

Hushovd, considered by many to be the greatest Norwegian cyclist of all time, took part in a NOK 24 million (£1.86 m) fundraise by Baring Group AS, which plans the salmon facility in Farsund municipality on the south coast. Hushovd, who retired from cycle racing in 2014, grew up in Grimstad, also on the south coast.

“The salmon industry is an exciting and forward-looking industry in which I have great faith,” Hushovd said in a press release from Baring.

“I see great growth potential in salmon production, both on land and at sea. The team at Baring Group has a very competent and versatile background. For me, it’s extra fun that this is happening in Southern Norway.”

24,000 tonnes

Other investors who bought newly issued shares were Ugland Kapital, Bøttger Invest, and Nieblok Invest, and the company’s main shareholder is Atlanter Holding.

Baring Group’s subsidiary Baring Farsund has permission to produce 24,000 tonnes of post-smolt and harvest-sized salmon annually and plans to start construction of the first phase, for production of 5,000 tonnes of large post-smolts for sale to fish farmers, this year.

The proceeds from the share issue will be used, among other things, to finance the project up until the start of construction and further develop of an offshore farming concept that Baring is also working on.

Greenest building

Baring’s ambition is to build the world’s first land-based aquaculture facility to meet BREEAM-NOR building sustainability standards.

“This, combined with the reuse of existing business land in Farsund, proximity to the market for both post-smolt and food fish, using only green energy including a significant proportion of solar power, helps to underline Baring’s strong position to become a leading producer of sustainable food in Norway,” said the company.

Baring plans a recirculating aquaculture system (RAS) using sea water drawn from deep-sea currents outside Farsund. Freshwater requirements will be partially met by desalination of sea water.