Sealice Expert Joins Benchmark Animal Health

3 March 2016, at 12:00am

NORWAY - Benchmark Animal Health, part of the Benchmark Holdings group that includes SalmoBreed, Fish Vet Group and AFGC in its Norwegian portfolio, has further strengthened its Bergen operations with the appointment of sea lice expert Rune Stigum Olsen.

Focused on delivering solutions to address the unmet needs of the aquaculture industry and in readiness to launch a pipeline of innovative products to support the Norwegian Salmon industry, Benchmark has appointed Rune as Stategic Manager Nordics.

Based out of Bergen in Norway, Rune will be responsible for the implementation of new solutions from the Benchmark pipeline to further support Norwegian Salmon farmers in managing the biological hurdles faced today so allowing for future growth of the industry.

Rune has a Degree in Aquaculture from Høyskolen in Sogn og Fjordane and a MSc in Aquaculture from the University of Bergen. He joins the team from Elanco, bringing with him over 20 years’ experience and insight of working in different areas within the aquaculture business. He is a well-known figure in the aquaculture industry, having previously held positions at Novartis, SalmoBreed, Tombre Group and Hydro Seafood (now Marine Harvest).

He has an in-depth knowledge of sea-lice control, fish farming strategy and management. In 2003 he founded and led the Hardanger Fish Health Network (HFN) to explore alternative and coordinated solutions for sea-lice control in Atlantic salmon on the west coast of Norway.

Bringing together stakeholders from across the industry and wildfish interests to tackle sea-lice was central to the programme’s success and in 2004 Rune was recognised for his ground-breaking work with an environmental award from Hordaland county. The results of this work have now been taken up and implemented as the official sea-lice control policy along the entire coast of Norway.

Commenting on joining Benchmark Animal Health, Rune Stigum Olsen said: “I am delighted to be a part of what I now consider to be one of the most interesting places to work within the aquaculture industry. Benchmark has a unique strategy to help the aquaculture industry succeed with teams working right across the sector, from breeding and genetics, veterinary health, advanced nutrition and an exciting, growing pipeline of sustainable health products and integrated solutions.

"Benchmark has laid the foundations to play a major role in driving improvements in aquaculture in the coming years. With an intense focus on the Norwegian market they have established a strong Norwegian team who hold central positions within the business. I am thrilled to now be part of such a professional company, with so many good people - many of whom I have worked with throughout my career.”

John Marshall, Technical Director for Benchmark Animal Health, commented: “We are extremely pleased that Rune is joining us at this important time and are confident he will play a key role in delivery of the new tools and solutions our customers need to succeed and grow.”