This is a national project to which high expectations have been attached.
In 2009 Nofima, one of Europe’s largest research groups within applied marine research, was allocated the task of forming the National Centre of Excellence for Capture-based Aquaculture by the Ministry of Fisheries and Coastal Affairs.
The centre’s task is to develop research-based solutions for how the fisheries industry can in the future catch and store fish live to add value to the raw material.
"Capture-based aquaculture enables us to attain totally different prices in our markets by being in a position to supply the right quality at the right time," says Nofima Scientist Kjell Midling, who heads the centre.
However, the concept of capture-based aquaculture of wild fish is not new, and Vesterålen Fiskeripark is one of the foremost Norwegian competence providers within this technology.
Vesterålen Fiskeripark has worked on this concept for many years in close collaboration with the industry and has developed broad competence. Consequently, Vesterålen Fiskeripark will be an important link between research and industry.
"Vesterålen Fiskeripark has a high level of competence in capture-based aquaculture, as well as a broad insight into the fisheries industry through close collaboration with fishermen over a period of many years,” says Midling. “They have long been keen to establish a centre of excellence for capture-based aquaculture and it is therefore extremely important that Nofima puts a collaboration agreement in place as soon as possible."
Vesterålen Fiskeripark has been allocated the task of establishing an annual national seminar/workshop to bring representatives from the research community and industry together to exchange experiences and knowledge. In addition, they shall arrange training courses for industry participants.
"We are proud to have received this task from Nofima, but we are also confident of meeting the expectations in a good manner," says Svein-Egil Stavem from Vesterålen Fiskeripark.
"Vesterålen Fiskeripark has worked on these concepts for a long time and we have many professional industry participants in our area who are already well underway. We are now looking forward to playing a part in spreading the message to the rest of the fisheries industry. This is an incredibly exciting development to be part of."