The algae bloom has cost Norwegian salmon farmers at least € 84 million

More than 7,5 million dead salmon, at a total weight of at least 13,000 tonnes, is so far the result from the toxic algae bloom in northern parts of Norway.

With losses amounting to at least € 84 million, the algae bloom has hit salmon farmers hard in northern parts of Nordland, and southern parts of Troms. A total of nine salmon farmers has been hit, some of them at multiple sites, almost completely wiping out sites.

Nordlaks lost 1,3 million salmon at one site, while another farmer, Nothern Lights Salmon, has losses of up to 90 percent of whole sites, piling up boxes of dead fish.

And it’s not over. The Norwegian Directorate of Fisheries Sunday reported that: “The algae bloom is not over.” Although regional director in Nordland, Janne Andersen, told E24 that it seems like that algae invasion is somewhat less than earlier.

2,5 million evacuated
There have been many countermeasures trying to reduce losses from the algae bloom. The harvesting vessel “Norwegian Gannet” at one point came to rescue, and a Coast Guard vessel has been helping fight algae attack.

Others have evacuated fish out of sites that have been fairly close to the algae bloom, including Ellingsen Seafood and Nordlaks. Communications manager at Nordlaks, Lars Fredrik Martinussen, told SalmonBusiness earlier that various scenarios had been worked on to reduce the risk, but the evacuation was the best solution.

Salmon has been evacuated the whole week, including this weekend, and a total number of 2,5 million salmon has now been evacuated in Nordland.

A yellow-green color
Speaking to SalmonBusiness last weak, Operating Manager of the Norwegian salmon farmer Gratanglaks, Lars Berg, described how the algae came into one of their sites.

“It was a belt that went from the surface down to about 25 meters deep. It was a yellow-green color that differed greatly from cages that were unaffected. The fish started dying shortly afterward, in large quantities,” Berg said.

Ballangen Sjøfarm, Ellingsen Seafood, Mortenlaks, Sørrollnesfisk, Northern Lights Salmon, Kleiva Fiskefarm, Gratanglaks, Nordlaks, and Salaks are the salmon farmers that have been affected by the algae bloom.

PHOTO: Gratanglaks

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