July 13, 2021
Atlantic Sapphire sees US$3 million loss after fish farm accident
Atlantic Sapphire is facing an estimated US$3 million loss following an July 9 accident at one of its salt-water grow-out systems based at a farm in Denmark.
The company estimated it has lost approximately 400 tonnes of fish, equivalent to about 17% of its annual harvest volumes from the Danish facility at steady-state production.
"The company's preliminary analysis, which remains subject to change, indicates that maintenance work performed in the filtration system caused water quality to quickly deteriorate, resulting in elevated mortality," Atlantic Sapphire wrote in a statement submitted to the Oslo Børs stock exchange on July 11. "Atlantic Sapphire is continuously improving its operating procedures to ensure that all actions taken by the farm operators do not pose a risk to the stability of the systems, therefore impacting the fish. However, human error altered the water levels in the RAS (recirculating aquaculture system) system and allowed previously stagnant water to flow into the tanks. To minimise the risk of a similar incident reoccurring, the company has updated certain operating procedures and such changes will take effect immediately."
The company said its grow-out systems in Denmark, with a large standing biomass, were unable to be split like the system at its US facility in Miami, Florida, which was upgraded following a separate mortality event there in March 2021.