200,000 parr die in blaze at Grieg Shetland site

Numbers come to light after fire at hatchery.

On Wednesday afternoon there was an outbreak of fire in the parr unit at Grieg Seafood’s hatchery at Girlsta in Shetland, Scotland.

In a release, the salmon farmer writes that the event had a negative impact on the fish health and welfare of some of the fish, as approximately 200 000 parr at 40 grams each were lost in the fire. The rest of the 3 million fish in the hatchery were saved and production is ongoing as normal.

“All emergency protocolled were followed and the Shetland Fire Brigade quickly extinguished the fire upon arrival. No employees were hurt during the incident,” wrote Grieg Global Communications Manager Kristina Furnes.

Grieg’s hatchery in Girlsta MAP: Google

Part of the equipment in the parr unit was damaged, but the building as well as the egg, fry and smolt units have not been not impacted.

The fire started in the oxygen delivery system. Grieg Seafood is currently investigating what happened, to avoid similar incidents in the future.

The incident will not impact planned smolt output to sea. The building and the fish were insured, and the event will not have significant economic impact on the company.

Grant Cummings, Managing Director of Grieg Seafood Shetland, said:

“Most importantly, no employees got hurt during this incident. Staff did exactly what they were trained to do in such events, which minimized the impact of the fire. I want to thank the team at Girlsta for their prompt action and problem solving which have minimized the scale of the incident. I also want to thank the Shetland Fire Brigade and our engineering supplier Ocean Kinetics for responding so quickly. We will go through all aspects of the incident to prevent it from happening again.”

How much losses they are expecting, can you give an estimation?

“The financial losses from the event are insignificant. We do not have the exact figures at the moment,” said Furnes.


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