Spain gains first permit to farm ling
By Chris Dove, SeafoodSource contributing editor, reporting from Malaga, Spain
08 May, 2012
Thanks to the country’s first permit to breed the species, Spanish consumers will soon be treated to the relatively new taste of farmed ling (Rachicentron canadum).
Valencia’s Regional Secretary for Fisheries has granted the first permit for cobia aquaculture to Victoriano Puchades López fish farm in La Partida Ciscarets de la Corbera. The company currently cultivates 145 metric tons of eel and 93 metric tons of mullet, but with the new license they will cease production of those species to focus on ling, cultivation and commercialization.
In a trading environment in which sustainable fishing practices and the sourcing of under-exploited species top the industry’s agenda, Puchades has seized the opportunity to cultivate ling, citing its high potential demand among consumers in Spanish and European markets.
The farm has an annual production capacity of 145 metric tons, with the goal of reaching 1,000 metric tons by 2017. Modifications at the facility based on a biodiversity report of September 2011 will see improvements to the treatment plant and recirculation and photovoltaic systems.
The only European countries that currently consume ling, which is characterized by an elongated body similar to eel and produces firm white meat, are Norway and Britain. The species is little known in Spain, where it is mostly marketed as a frozen product for about EUR 12 per kilogram.
Described by scientists as Spain’s “promising economic alternative, useful to minimize the downturn suffered in the world’s natural fisheries,” growth rates reaching at least 5 kilograms within 12 months will produce “high quality meat, high in omega-3, ideal for sushi and multiple gastronomic applications.”
08 May, 2012