The Canadian arm of Norway-based salmon farming giant Cermaq has reached a long-term deal to supply 100-gram smolts to land-based salmon farmer Kuterra Salmon.
Cermaq Canada and and Emergent Holdings LLC, which operates Kuterra Salmon, announced Tuesday they reached a three-year agreement for Cermaq to supply the smolt in what is the formalization of a deal that's been in place since 2014.
The financial terms of the deal were not disclosed, but Cermaq Canada Managing Director David Kiemele said the arrangement will provide "greater business certainty for all organizations involved."
Kuterra, located in 'Namgis First Nation traditional territory on northern Vancouver Island in British Columbia, was founded in 2012.
Last year, Emergent Holdings LLC, a private investment partnership that also owns Maine land-based salmon project Whole Oceans, finalized a 15-year lease with land-based salmon farmer Kuterra for access to its salmon production. Since then, the group has been looking at strengthening the operations and creating business continuity, the company said.
“In investigating possible options, it made sense to formalize the purchase of smolts from Cermaq Canada as we have been happy with the quality of the smolts provided, and the overall health, growth and performance of the smolts provided to-date," said Jacob Bartlett, CEO, of Emergent Holdings LLC.
The agreement will run from October 2021 through to October 2024, according to Bartlett.
Canada Prime Minister Justin Trudeau's Liberal Party pledged to transition from netpen farming operations in British Columbia by 2025. Canada’s Department of Fisheries and Oceans's (DFO) said in a comprehensive report that the transition would be challenging, and moving to only land-based salmon farming operations by that date would not be feasible.
Cermaq Canada announced earlier this year it would be trialing new semi-closed containment operations, which it has already tested in Norway.