Thousands of market-ready fish die at Norway Royal Salmon’s Icelandic subsidiary

Published on
February 14, 2022
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Arctic Fish has been experiencing severe biological issues at two of its sites in Dyrafjordur, Iceland, parent company Norway Royal Salmon ASA (NRS) has confirmed.

In a press release, Trondheim, Norway-headquartered NRS said a final estimate of total mortality at the two sites is under review but is estimated to be between 1,500 and 2,000 metric tons (NRS) of large-size fish that were ready for market. 

“All efforts are being made to handle this efficiently, which include speeding up harvesting in these two sites in the coming weeks. Our excellent employees in Iceland have made great efforts in handling the situation in the best possible manner,” NRS said. “The main root cause for the mortality is related to reduced fish health, which could have been caused by stress due to handling. Secondary complications related to limitations on harvesting capacity may also have impacted the fish health.”

This event will have an impact on the results in first quarter of this year as well as the harvesting estimates for the year, the company said, to be addressed in its fourth-quarter 2021 presentation on the 23 February, 2022. 

Before the mortalities, Arctic Fish was expecting its Farming Iceland segment to harvest a total volume of 13,000 MT head-on-gutted salmon (HOG) this year and 24,000 MT in 2025.

In Norway, it has projected a harvest of 35,000 MT HOG, with an upward adjustment of 15,000 MT to 50,000 MT in 2023.

As a group, NRS owns 36,085 MT of maximum allowed biomass (MAB) in Norway’s Troms and Finnmark regions, and 17,800 MT MAB for salmon farming and 5,300 MT MAB for trout farming in Iceland through Arctic Fish. It also holds a minority interest in two associated Norwegian aquaculture companies, which together own nine fish-farming licenses.  

Contributing Editor reporting from London, UK

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