The company is due to start construction of its Ningbo facility in January 2021 and has just signed a deal with Benchmark Genetics to supply 9.5 million ova over the next five years. According to NAP, it will be the first fully integrated and commercially viable RAS facility in China. The initial capacity is 8,000 tonnes, with ambitions to expand first to 16,000 tonnes and then to 40.000 tonnes.
“Benchmark Genetics has a proven record of their ability to supply live eggs all-year-round to destinations worldwide, and security of supply is of key importance to optimise the production planning at our facility,” said Ragnar Joensen, chairman of the board of NAP, in a press release.
Joensen noted that the Chinese authorities and consumers are very concerned about food safety and that Benchmark’s biosecure facilities, combined with a comprehensive screening system, make the company confident that the eggs from Benchmark have the best starting conditions when entering into their RAS system.
“Their R&D capabilities and product offering, adapted for land-based RAS production, add to the benefits of signing a long-term agreement,” he added.
Geir Olav Melingen, commercial director at Benchmark Genetics, said: “We have already supplied eggs to China since 2002 and have established a logistic system that so far has worked successfully, even during the challenging times of Covid-19.”