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Our Icelandic sister company StofnFiskur renewed approval issued by Sernapesca

StofnFiskur remains the only foreign supplier of Atlantic Salmon Ova to Chile as a result of the renewed approval issued by Sernapesca

Benchmark Genetics’ StofnFiskur was firstly approved in 2016 by the Chilean Fisheries and Aquaculture Authorities, Sernapesca in accordance with the OIE (World Organization for Animal Health) Compartment standard. The approval covers all our four salmon production sites in Iceland. StofnFiskur was the first breeding company in the world with this approval and is currently the only foreign company authorized to export Atlantic salmon ova to Chile.

As with all approvals, the Sernapesca approval is time limited and needs to be renewed. StofnFiskur is happy to announce that they this year again received an approval by Sernapesca and can continue the export of Atlantic Salmon ova from Iceland to Chile.

The process of approval has been comprehensive, starting with a first approval by The Icelandic Food and Veterinary Authority MAST. The next step was for MAST to apply to the Chilean Fisheries and Aquaculture Authorities, Sernapesca, who finally issued their approval. OIE Compartments means that the zones around StofnFiskur’s four land-based facilities in Iceland is defined as completely isolated and protected from external disease threats. The broodstock, smolt and salmon ova can only be moved within the zone defined by the approval. StofnFiskur is following strict routines for follow-up, control, facility management as part of the approval.

Benchmark Genetics’ StofnFiskur extremely proud of unique facilities and perfect locations for biosecure farming operations in Iceland. The land-based farms are supplied with clean and pathogen free sea- and freshwater from boreholes, where water is naturally filtered through porous lava. This provides StofnFiskur with one of the best disease-free environment for farmed fish in the world. Farming in such optimal conditions means they can produce and deliver salmon ova produced in accordance with the highest levels of biosecurity every week of the year.

StofnFiskur operation has been producing broodstock in the full-cycle land-based systems in Iceland since 1991. Biosecurity is a very important part of the company culture. That is why the prevention and protection of the fish from infectious disease agents is one of the main focus points. StofnFiskur places great emphasis on minimizing the risks of infection with strict preventative measures selected after extensive risk analysis that are constantly being reviewed. All four sites have been operating in accordance with the OIE compartment standard for a decade, and it was important for StofnFiskur to be able to document that all sites are 100 % biosecure through the renewal of this approval.

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The customer’s needs are of top priority at StofnFiskur, they export Atlantic salmon ova to 22 countries worldwide.

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"The setup we have in Iceland is securing the highest standards of biosecurity in the industry and allows the production of ova every week of the year." Jan-Emil Johannesen, Head of Benchmark Genetics

Sernapesca has also a great impact on our company Benchmark Genetics Chile. In addition to our local production of broodstock and ova, we are also in a position to offer ova imported directly from Iceland to Chile.

This means that StofnFiskur is in a position to deliver salmon ova to the Chilean market every week of the year — both local breed and imported eggs. The company is offering the two product packages SalmoProtect and SalmoSelect, including a number of genetic traits for disease resistance tailored to meet different customer needs in Chile.

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"In Benchmark Genetics Chile we are collaborating with our sister companies in Norway and Iceland to exchange competence and technology to ensure that our genetic program in Chile is kept at the best and most advanced level, to the benefit of the Chilean farming industry." Matías del Campo, General Manager, Benchmark Genetics Chile

In November 2017, Benchmark Genetics imported highly biosecure and genetically advanced ova from Iceland to Chile as a starting point for establishing a local breeding programme in the 2nd largest salmon producing country in the world. The broodstock is now being adapted to Chilean conditions by our team of the geneticists in Chile and Europe, to suits the needs of our local customers. First deliveries of ova from our local production will be available in Q1-2021.

Benchmark Genetics Chile are also offering technical genetics services to external breeding programmes in Chile for Atlantic salmon, rainbow trout and coho.


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