The Group owns fish farms in Sweden and in Finland, as well as fish production facilities in Estonia, Finland and Great Britain. These facilities have an impact on the environment. As a company operating sustainably we are aware of our global responsibility for preserving natural resources and unharmed environment and we attempt to keep the environmental impact of our activities at a minimum and further reduce our ecological footprint by employing as cost-efficient resources as possible.
According to the Environmental Impact Assessment and Environmental Management System Act, the fishing industry has significant environmental impact that is mostly related to the emission of wastewater generated in farms and pollutants contained therein (mainly nitrogen and phosphorus) into seawater and lake water and, as a result, deterioration of water quality. This in turn may damage habitats or the living environment of birds and animals. Concentration and distribution of pollutants depends on the production technology used, on the quantity of fish feed and on sea currents, wind directions and other environmental factors.
To operate, fish farming requires a water abstraction permit that is issued for a period of 7 to 10 years. We actively mitigate our environmental impact under the strict supervision of environmental authorities. We ensure adherence to all necessary measures for maximum reduction of the negative environmental impact in all main stages of fish production and processing in our sites. In addition, we contribute by deploying ecological technologies in our fish farms and production facilities. In our investments, we observe the principles of the corresponding BAT (Best Available Technique) method.
In the past financial year, the Group’s investments totalled 1.6 million euros. We invested in improving energy efficiency of fish production facility in Renko, Finland and Saaremaa, Estonia by installing solar panel systems. Investments are also made into production equipment to improve usage of resources. In 2016 investments into the equipment of Finnish and Swedish fish farms totalled 0.3 million euros.
In 2015 we invested in the wastewater treatment plant of our fish farm in Finland and increased the cleaning efficiency of all emissions to 96-100%.
In connection with an export project of fish roe to Japan, we needed more fresh water for processing the fish roe that is now produced with the reverse osmosis method from seawater in order to reduce the burden on the local borewell.
As an international fish producer, we continue to reduce the influence of our activities on the environment also in the coming years.