The marine sector in Norway - an ocean of opportunities!

Foto: Cermaq

A prosperous industry    

Norway is the world's second largest exporter of seafood, and exports seafood for 70 billion NOKS. The report "Creating value based on productive seas in 2050," by the Royal Norwegian Society of Sciences and Letters and the Norwegian Academy of Technological Sciences suggests the possibilities for a six fold increase in the economic turnover potential of the marine industries in 2050. Revenue potential is estimated at 550 billion NOKs in 2050 against current ca. 90 billion NOKs.

Natural resource advantage

Norway is privileged with a long coastline of cold, clear and ideally sheltered coastal waters, a healthy climate promoting the production of high quality seafood, and large areas available for the cultivation of marine plant biomass. Moreover, aquaculture exploits natural processes of self-renewal.

A competent management of the environment

The Norwegian marine sector is reputed for its responsible management and efficient fisheries practices. The official authorities have succeeded in close collaboration with the industry and the scientific community to establish a sustainable framework for commercial exploitation of the marine resources.  

A prioritized sector by the government

The Norwegian government has continuously confirmed their commitment to prioritize the marine sector latest in their whitepaper "Meld. St.  10 (2015-2016) A competitive seafood industry."

A knowledge based industry

The marine communities are putting a lot of energy into a comprehensive and an up to date knowledge base.

National competence centers - putting life sciences at work

  • Norwegian Seaweed Technology Center, is a knowledge platform for technology development within industrial cultivation, harvesting, processing and application of seaweed in Norway. The center of competence constitutes SINTEF Fisheries and Aquaculture, SINTEF Materials and Chemistry, NTNU Department of Biology and NTNU Department of Biotechnology
  • National Facility for Marine Bioprocessing (NAMAB) The plant is effectively a mini factory where technology companies can get help to transfer good research results from laboratories and produce advanced products in an even larger scale.
  • Institute of Marine Research’s main task is to provide advice to Norwegian authorities on aquaculture and the ecosystems of the Barents Sea, the Norwegian Sea, the North Sea and the Norwegian coastal zone
  • Directorate of Fisheries’ areas of operation are management of marine resources and aquaculture management

Regional and national clusters – sharing knowledge and competence

An innovative industry

A broader platform for aquaculture – taking advantage of the marine biodiversity and looking into new spices

More embryonic industries such as the biomarine ingredients industry, seaweed and microalgae farming, constitute new value chains. Large –scale cultivation of seaweed has the opportunity to develop into a new, large industry in Norway and could create a major potential source of protein for feed as well as sugar for biotechnological production of chemicals and biofuels. Furthermore, harvesting from lower trophical layers, such as mesopelagic fishes, zooplankton and invertebrates are being explored as sources for ingredients, chemicals and materials

Strong collaboration with the supplier industry

With supply means those inputs in the form of goods and services as required to either harvest or produce marine products. Norwegian suppliers of technology, services and expertise within fisheries and aquaculture offer knowledge based marine solutions, developed within a framework and requirements of sustainable seafood industry.
Approximately 5,900 people are directly employed in aquaculture production. In addition, thousands of jobs are created in transportation, the supply industry, as well as in commerce. All in all, including spin-off effects, it is estimated that in excess of 21,000 people are employed in aquaculture related activities. 

In 2012, Norwegian aquaculture production amounted to approximately 1,3 million tons, 99 percent of which was Atlantic salmon and trout. The first-hand value of the aquaculture production reached an all-time high of 31,4 billion NOK.

Contracting fishing boats and ocean-going trawlers with the environment in mind

The fishing industry in Norway is keen to preserve the environment and has over the years experienced that it is a good strategy for business too. Trimmings from fisheries are no longer thrown overboard, but instead turned into value added products such as proteins and marine oils.
Over the last years the fishing industry has been looking for alternative energy carriers and this summer the first El-driven fishing boat was brought into operation. Thus contributing to reduced CO2 emission and creating a more beneficial working environment for the crew.