Aquaculture for all

Seafood buyers tour Norway's ASC-certified salmon facilities

Atlantic Salmon Technology & equipment Hatcheries +7 more

In a bid to promote responsible salmon aquaculture in Norway, Aquaculture Stewardship Council (ASC) recently hosted a group of international seafood buyers to showcase ASC-certified salmon farms on the islands of Hitra and Frøya.

A group photo in front of a traditional Norwegian clapboard building.
12 attendees from retailers and suppliers – including Sainsbury’s, Colruyt, Frais Embal, Highliner, Disney’s, Pescanova, Loblaws and E-mart – took part in the tour


About half of the world’s farmed salmon is produced in Norway, of which around 40 percent (342 farms) are ASC-certified.

Over the four-day tour, 12 attendees from retailers and suppliers – including Sainsbury’s, Colruyt, Frais Embal, Highliner, Disney’s, Pescanova, Loblaws and E-mart – were welcomed to facilities run by Leroy, Salmar and Mowi.

Highlights included:

  • A visit to one of Leroy’s hatcheries, highlighting the complexity of this part of the salmon lifecycle and value-chain.
  • A visit to Salmar’s ‘Ocean Farm 1’, the world’s first large-scale off-shore salmon farm, which prompted a discussion on the benefits and scalability of this farming method.
  • A tour of a Mowi harvest vessel, providing insight into the company's innovative approach to harvesting directly at sea and the welfare benefits this brings.
A vast metal fish farm.
A view of Salmar's Ocean Farm 1, as seen by the delegates

The farm has the capacity to produce 10,000 tonnes of salmon a year. © ASC

Laetitia Rosing, ASC’s Norway market development manager, said in a press release: "Discovery Tour Norway is a unique opportunity to connect producers to processors and buyers and show them the demand of ASC certified salmon, firsthand what responsible aquaculture entails. Communicating the value behind ASC’s label with its strong requirements, verification, and traceability from farm to store shelf is critical to ensuring continuing demand for our certification in the marketplace, the ultimate pull for more farms adhering to our standards. The Discovery Tour was facilitated through the support of our sponsor Control Union Norge and we are most grateful they joined us on this learning trip together with our partners.”

Winnie Choo, senior quality assurance manager of Loblaws Canada, added: “The tour was truly enlightening and deepened my understanding of the intricacies and advancements in sustainable aquaculture. I appreciated the opportunity to witness firsthand the innovative practices employed to ensure responsible and environmentally friendly salmon farming. I particularly valued the comprehensive presentations and the guided visits to various facilities which provided a thorough overview of the entire process form hatchery to harvest.”

The tour ended with a workshop and networking event. Speakers included representatives from Biomar, who discussed the complexities and innovation needed in aquaculture feed, highlighting the differences the ASC feed standard makes regarding traceability of feed ingredients. The Norwegian Seafood Council provided consumer insights of salmon from markets across the globe and event sponsor Control Union Norge who presented an overview of assurance services for ASC certification.

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