Land-based steelhead farmer Taste of BC Aquafarms, a subsidiary of US-based Blue Star Foods Corp., said Monday it signed a two-year agreement to supply steelhead salmon fingerlings to West Coast Fishculture, a fellow steelhead farmer based in British Columbia.

The deal is worth approximately $ 1million (€890,000) in new business for Taste of BC, the company said.

"We appreciate the vote of confidence from this local steelhead producer whom we have known for many years. It is an acknowledgement that we have mastered the early rearing cycle that is so critical in overall growth performance of these fish," said Steve Atkinson, founder of Taste of BC.

West Coast Fishculture raises its fish in Lois Lake, located in coastal BC, and is partnered Blundell Seafoods, which processes the fish. It markets its fish under the Lois Lake brand.

“While in some sense, we could view these folks as competitors, the reality here is that there is more than enough demand for our fresh, sustainability produced steelhead salmon than any single participant can supply," Atkinson added.

"We want to continue to build the RAS and aquaculture industry up here in British Columbia and lend a hand to our friends where we can."

Expansion underway

In November, Taste of BC parent company Blue Star Foods announced it chose Deep Bay, BC, as the location for its planned larger-scale land-based steelhead salmon farm.

Earlier this year, Blue Star acquired land-based steelhead producer Taste of BC Aquafarms. At the time, Blue Star CEO John Keeler said company plans to produce 21,000 metric tons of product by 2028.

Last year, production at the Taste of BC steelhead farm pilot site in Nanaimo, BC, which has been operating for more than a decade, reached 103 metric tons of its Little Cedar Falls brand of steelhead.

Blue Star also announced last month the closing of its recent public offering raising proceeds of $4 million (€3.5 million).

Blue Star shares are traded on the Nasdaq Capital Market under the symbol BSFC.

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