Russian Fishery Company (RFC) and frozen food distributor Agama Group have begun construction of their joint venture haddock processing facility and inaugurated their cod processing plant in Murmansk.

The companies announced the 50 percent stake joint venture earlier this month.

The factories will have capacity to produce 50 metric tons of finished whitefish products per day, with the aim of increasing supply to the domestic market as well as exports, which are expected to climb 5,000 metric tons per year.

“The development of [value-added] processing in Russia allows us to replace raw exports with supplies of high-quality products to the foreign market, which will ensure an increase in revenues,” Russian Fishery Company CEO Fedor Kirsanov said.

The plant is equipped with artificial intelligence technology which assesses the structure of the fish, and cuts fillets with minimal damage.

About RUB 900 million (€12.2 million/$13.5 million) was invested to construct the cod factory and RUB 250 million (€3.4 million/$3.7 million) for the haddock facility, as part of a state-run program to invest more in fishing vessels and processing facilities.

The company is awaiting licensing in order to start marketing the products produced.