Finger Lakes Fish’s LocalCoho RAS receives SQF certification
Auburn, New York, U.S.A.-based Finger Lakes Fish has become one of the first aquaculture production facilities to receive certification from the Safe Quality Food (SQF) Program.
The company recently opened a 43,000-square-foot land-based recirculating aquaculture system, hatching its first salmon eggs in April 2018 and bringing its first batch of coho to market under the LocalCoho brand.
The SQF Certification Program, administered by the Food Marketing Institute (FMI) in the United States, is a food safety and quality assurance certification based on the HAACP program. The certification is focused on ensuring comprehensive food safety plans have been implemented at food processing facilities and verifying that food production companies are able to effectively manage food safety. SQF is benchmarked to the Global Food Safety Initiative (GFSI), a global collection of standards and requirements for food companies to practice food safety management at the same high-quality standards around the world.
“As a brand dedicated to elevating industry standards, LocalCoho strives to be an industry role model for the safety and quality of our products and facilities.” Finger Lakes Fish Founder Ed Heslop said in a press release. “Operating among the first SQF-certified RAS production facilities demonstrates our commitment to doing our best for our industry, for our customers, and for our environment.”'
Finger Lakes Fish eventually plans to ramp up production to the facility’s capacity of 400 metric tons and expand into selling fillets to a wider market across the Northeast and Mid-Atlantic. It became the world’s first RAS coho salmon farm to be awarded Best Aquaculture Practices (BAP) certification in October 2019.