May 25, 2023
Innovasea helps secure approval for first ocean-based fish farm in Aruba, Netherlands
Innovasea, a specialist in technologically advanced aquatic solutions for aquaculture and fish tracking, announced on May 24 that it has successfully helped another company, Petros, secure government approval for a 3,000 tonne open ocean fish farm that will be eight kilometers off the southwest coast of Aruba, the Netherlands.
Innovasea performed extensive consulting and site selection work for Petros, which plans to use Innovasea's submersible SeaStations and other technologies to raise Northern Red Snapper.
"We're thrilled to be partnering with Petros to create Aruba's first ocean-based fish farm," said Langley Gace, Innovasea's senior vice president of business development. "This is an important project for the country and the region and we're confident that our open ocean expertise and our proven egg-to-harvest approach to fish farming will help ensure its success."
Built over three phases, the farm will produce its fish in a sustainable, secure and traceable manner. Once complete, it will feature 16 SeaStations and a land-based hatchery and employ close to 100 local team members. Future growth will target 9,000 tonnes of biomass with goals to diversify species and expand into seaweed cultivation.
"We are fortunate to have a strong partner in Innovasea, an industry leader in open ocean farming with proven experience with warm water species such as Red Snapper" said Gunnar Bracelly, Petros' founder and president. "Being able to rely on Innovasea's full-service capabilities enables our team to focus on implementing the bold vision of diversifying the Aruban economy and becoming the catalyst for an aquaculture revolution throughout the Caribbean region."
Northern Red Snapper is a high value species with strong demand in the United States – but a limited and seasonal supply that comes entirely from the fishing industry.
Creating a vibrant aquaculture industry will help Aruba diversify its economy, which relies heavily on tourism and strengthen its food security profile. The submersible SeaStation is ideal as it is invisible to tourists when submerged.
"SeaStations spend most of their time fully submerged, so they're a great fit for a place like Aruba where it's important to preserve beautiful views for vacationers," said Gace.
Petros will also market its fish to the many cruise ships that dock in Aruba. This will support the cruise industry's effort to reduce its carbon footprint by sourcing fresh seafood from local sources.
The company is looking for additional investors for the project and is open to both equity and debt financing for the initial stage.