Blue Harvest Fisheries acquires High Liner Foods’ scallop business in New Bedford

Blue Harvest Fisheries announced Monday, 12 September it has acquired High Liner Foods’ scallop business and processing facility in New Bedford, Massachusetts, U.S.A.

High Liner purchased the plant from American Pride Seafoods for USD 34.5 million (EUR 31 million) in 2013, but in February 2016 High liner decided to shutter the value-added fish operation in place there, though the plant’s scallop processing operations were not affected. Terms of the sale to Blue Harvest were not disclosed.

“We are pleased to conclude this transaction with Blue Harvest and look forward to working with them to continue to offer high-quality, sustainable scallop products to our valued customers,” High Liner Foods President CEO Keith Decker said in a press release announcing the deal.

Blue Harvest, founded in 2015 and backed by private investment firm Bregal Partners, has rapidly scaled up its presence in the U.S. scallop business through a series of acquisitions over the past 18 months. The company bought Peabody, a seafood company with eight scallop vessels and shoreside facilities in Newport News, Virginia, in May 2015. In March 2016, it purchased Harbor Blue and its seven scallop vessels based in New Bedford, Massachusetts. The same month, it announced the acquisition of Hygrade Ocean Products, a seafood processing company with a 33,000-square-foot facility in New Bedford.

Blue Harvest CEO Jeff Davis said in a press release his latest move further solidifies his company’s foray into the American scallop business.

“[High Liner’s] expertise and distribution capabilities in the frozen scallop market are highly complementary to our existing capabilities in the fresh scallop market,” Davis said. “Through this acquisition we will grow our customer base, increase our portfolio of quality assured products, and build increased presence in the premium seafood marketplace.”

Davis told SeafoodSource in August that Blue Harvest and Bregal Partners are continuing to look at possible further acquisitions, particularly in regard to its scallop business, where it would like to purchase two more vessels to reach the maximum number allowed by U.S. law.

“We would like to continue to grow, and if we find the right businesses to acquire, we certainly consider that,” he said. “We still have the ability to add two more vessels to our scallop-fishing fleet and we’d especially like to do that.”


Want seafood news sent to your inbox?

You may unsubscribe from our mailing list at any time. Diversified Communications | 121 Free Street, Portland, ME 04101 | +1 207-842-5500