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Sustainable harvest

Our factory “Aker BioMarine” and World Wide Fund for Nature (WWF) Norway co-operates for sustainable krill harvesting and management in the Antarctic Ocean. The co-operations shall ensure that today’s and tomorrow’s harvesting of krill are consistent with sustainable practices and encourage to dialog with experts so as to keep Aker BioMarine‘s fisheries operations at the forefront of environmentally sound and sustainable performance.

Akers patented Eco-Harvesting fishing system ensures no by-catch
Harvesting krill in a commercially viable and environmentally sound way is challenging. Traditional trawling methods where the catch is hauled up on deck and emptied into holding tanks before processing is unsuitable, as the krill contains highly digestive enzymes and basically self-destructs before it can be processed.
Furthermore, unwanted by-catch, e.g.of fish and seals, is a problem with regular trawling in the South Atlantic and may pose a threat to fragile marine eco-systems in the Antarctic.

Aker Eco-Harvesting fishing system allows the fishing net to stay under water during the entire operation. Independent observers have verified that the patented and novel harvesting method ensures no by-catch of other species than Euphausia superba.
The equipment stays under water while a continuous stream of water flows through the hose, bringing the krill live and fresh directly into the factory vessel, which allows for processing of fresh raw material with superior product quality.

Eco-Harvesting results in minimal environmental impact. The innovative, sustainable krill harvesting will allow future generations to reap bounteous harvests of krill for yet-to-be-developed uses of this tiny but nutrition-packed crustacean.


Biomass of krill
Krill (Euphausia superba) are small crustaceans forming a vital component of the Antarctic ecosystem. Current catching effort is below 150 000 tons pr annum. This represents a very small impact on the total estimated biomass of more than 400 million tons. Fishing of krill is expected to increase, but experts agree that the harvesting level is safe and well within the precautionary limits of 4 million tons set by CCAMLR (Commission for the Conservation of Antarctic Marine Living). There have been shown no detrimental effects of fishing on the overall biomass of krill available for whales, seal, birds or other species feeding on krill. Due to the operational difficulties, extreme conditions and high cost level fishing in Antarctic waters, only a very modest increase in the future fishing effort is predicted.

Commission for the Conservation of Antarctic Marine Living (CCAMLR) is a treaty-based organization responsible for preserving the resources of the Antarctic.

The aim of the Convention is to conserve marine life of the Southern Ocean. CCAMLR is concerned not only with fisheries regulation; it also strives to implement a holistic approach to the management of marine living resources in the Southern Ocean.
CCAMLR has 25 full member nations, and the process of obtaining a license for krill fishing is stringent and restricted.

Conservation measures adopted by CCAMLR are based on scientific advice and require enforcement to be effective.

CCAMLR has established a so-called trigger level, which is currently 620,000 metric tons. This level is based on a historical maximum annual harvest in area 48 (in which most krill harvesting takes place), and is the limit for how much krill can be harvested before special resource management measures are implemented. The total allowable catch (TAC) is set at four million metric tons, which covers the allocations for four subsea areas. The quotes are calculated after the part that goes to food for the whales, seals, pingvines have being deducted.

Our vessels carry an International Scientific Observer to verify fishing data in accordance with Conservation of Antarctic Marine Living Resources (CCAMLR) Scheme of International Scientific Observation and Memorandum of Understanding between Norway and the United Kingdom

Aker BioMarine set environmental standards for suppliers and business partners



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