Minister of Fisheries and Seafood, Odd Emil Ingebrigtsen (centre) opening the new Aquafeed Technology Centre (l-r, Hans Kleivdahl (Norce), Knut Bjørve (UiB), Bente Torstensen and Øyvind Fylling-Jensen (Nofima) (photo courtesy of Helge Skodvin©Nofima))
The Aquafeed Technology Centre (ATC) was officially opened during a live-streamed webinar in Bergen last Wednesday. Commemorated by the Norwegian Minister of Fisheries and Seafood, Odd Emil Ingebrigtsen, this state-of-the-art innovation centre will aid in the research, analysis, process, and product development of fish food and aquafeed.
This centre will contribute to the development of maintainable aquafeed production, open new resource opportunities and further cultivate a circular bio-economy. All of these activities will serve the overarching goal of cultivating sustainable food production through innovation, research, and development.
The Aquafeed Technology Centre is sponsored by the Nofima research institute, in collaboration with the NORCE research institute, the University of Bergen and the University of Nottingham.
“Our vision is to be a centre where we can support both research and industry activities in producing new and better ingredients from both raw materials and side streams or waste from biomasses that have their own functions,” said Mari Moren, Research Director for Nofima.
Mari Moren, Nofima Research Director
(Photo courtesy of Helge Skodvin©Nofima)
The overall budget for this project was estimated at nearly 34 million NOK. Primarily financed by the Norwegian Research Council, Nofima received additional funding from Sparebank Vest.
Key Components of the Aquafeed Technology Centre
During the webinar, key speakers from Nofima, NORCE and the University of Bergen provided insight into the opportunities that this new centre will offer through various capacities. It will provide expertise and research infrastructures in four key areas: Bioprocessing, Process Technology, Extrusion and Feed Technology, and Analytical Platforms.
Moren highlighted that while Nofima is already involved in such research projects, the opening of the Aquafeed Technology Centre will enable great strides forward. “Through this research centre and these projects, we now have the tools to take our work further and even take the lead in domestic and international research”, she added.
Several other facilities also contributed their resources and capacity. This includes the National AlgaePARC Mongstad, the Norwegian Centre for Bioprocessing and Fermentation, the Teaching and Research Centre at the University of Liege, the National Facility for Marine Bioprocessing, and the Norwegian NMR Platform.
“An infrastructure like this is important so that researchers and industry experts can figure out how best to make use of the materials available,” said Moren.
Nofima is an independent, state-funded, and internationally renowned research institute, specialising in the fields of fisheries, aquaculture, and food research. Operating under the vision of “sustainable food for all”, Nofima has an established reputation for supplying research-backed solutions that provide competitive advantages along these value chains.