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Antarctic krill is a source of sustainable aquaculture feed

Thursday, May 6, 2021

CICERO Shades of Green, a leading and independent environmental assessment provider of green and sustainability bond frameworks, conducted a research-based report on Aker BioMarine´s governance, revenue streams and investments. The report concludes that “Antarctic krill is a source of sustainable aquaculture feed with positive climate contribution potential.”

The report stated that the main reason aquaculture incomes are classified as medium green – and sustainable – is that krill replaces other sources of feed, such as soy and fishmeal that have a higher CO2 footprint. Krill contributes to lowering the CO2 emissions in the value chain and is a source of sustainable feed for fish and seafood farming companies. This is important because the carbon emissions of farmed salmon mostly come from the production of feed.

The fact that Aker BioMarine has a high sustainability standard when it comes to krill harvesting in Antarctica and that the company has a clear strategy for making the vessels that catch krill more sustainable were also contributing factors for CICERO when giving the “medium green” classification for the aquaculture revenues. 

“CICERO Shades of Green is impressed by Aker BioMarine’s proactive approach to climate change issues – both in terms of mitigating negative effects and capitalizing on opportunities. This is exhibited by their recent investments in new and energy-efficient vessels that help to reduce greenhouse gas emissions and their establishment of a circular economy company,” said Harald Francke Lund, CEO of CICERO Shades of Green. Aker BioMarine's vessels Antarctic Endurance and Antarctic Provider are more energy-efficient than the older vessels and therefore emit less CO2 per unit produced.

“Aker BioMarine wants to contribute to the aquaculture industry by helping our customers make more responsible choices and be in the forefront of the sustainability agenda in our industry,” said Sigve Nordrum, EVP Animal Health and Nutrition at Aker BioMarine. In the last ten years, Aker BioMarine has halved its CO2 emissions per ton krill produced. The ambition is to half this again within the next ten years. The company has laid out key performance indicators on how the 2030 targets will be reached. Within the aquaculture segment, Aker BioMarine:

  • Will make aquaculture more efficient by contributing to 1 billion extra servings of seafood produced annually.
  • Actively engage with stakeholders and research efforts on conservation and the sustainable management of Antarctica’s resources, and has obtained certifications for relevant products.
  • Uses Eco-Harvesting technology that brings live krill on board the vessels and prevents unnecessary by-catch such as birds and sea mammals.
  • Aker BioMarine’s newest krill harvesting vessel is purpose-built and the company has estimated it to be 30% more energy efficient than comparable harvesting vessels.
  • Join an industry collaboration platform called Råvareløftet, to reduce the carbon footprint of Norwegian salmon in 2020. The purpose of Råvareløftet is to accelerate the phasing in of new and sustainable raw materials for fish feed in order to enable increased production of seafood while reducing the overall climate and environmental footprint of the aquaculture industry.

Read the full Aker BioMarine company assessment here.

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