The BLAASTROM® fish silage system creates high-quality silage from dead farmed fish and fish waste from fish processing facilities, increasing sustainability in fish farm operations. “Our solution gives fish producers a new revenue source, while saving the environment and promoting the circular economy,” says Tommy Engholm, Sales Manager at Ydra.
For a fish farmer, every fish death means an economic loss. A few fish die each day in the course of nature, but mass mortalities can also occur from disease, equipment failure or algae bloom. In this case, dead fish must be processed quickly to avoid environmental damage.
“In some countries, nearly half of all dead farmed fish are landfilled, incinerated or disposed of in another non-sustainable way. This harms the environment and costs fish farmers lots of money,” says Engholm.
The BLAASTROM® fish silage system processes dead farmed fish and fish cuttings into high-quality silage. The silage can then be sold as an ingredient for cosmetics, pet food, biogas and other products.
“Our motto is: BLAASTROM® turns waste into value. Our system creates unmatched silage quality,” says Engholm. The BLAASTROM® system consists of a tank, a powerful grinder pump and double-edged, hardened stainless steel knives. Dead fish are placed in the tank and ground into increasingly smaller bits, while an acidic solution is added to stop decomposition and retain nutritional quality.
In a short time, the biomass becomes a particle-free liquid that has the proper consistency and pH value to qualify as high grade. “Our customers also receive a fish silage ‘recipe book’. We give them the steps for making the best silage on the market. This way they can get top dollar for their fish waste,” says Engholm.
BLAASTROM® saves the environment from harmful disposal practices. “We give fish farmers a profitable alternative to expensive and non-sustainable disposal. In a broader perspective, we are helping to promote circularity in the aquaculture industry,” says Engholm.
BLAASTROM® increases efficiency and cuts costs in dead fish handling as well. “We have the fastest grinding process on the market. Our system can grind one metric ton of fish in less than a minute and produce high-quality silage in less than one hour. Other systems take several days,” says Engholm. In addition, BLAASTROM® performs the entire operation in one stage rather than the usual two. Due to the powerful grinder pump, a full-sized salmon of up to 18 kg (40 lbs) can be ground in one process, saving both time and money.
Fish farmers must balance profit creation with sustainability measures. The EU’s Farm to Fork Strategy calls for greater sustainability in all food production, including aquaculture. Demands from consumers, NGOs and governments put added pressure on the industry as well.
“Selling high-quality fish silage is a great business opportunity. Fish farmers don’t have to sacrifice profits for sustainability. As a result, new business models are emerging,” says Engholm. Fish producers can sell the silage directly to product manufacturers or they can sell the dead fish to a middleman that handles the processing and further sale.
Introduced in 2019, the BLAASTROM® fish silage grinder and tank system has some 450 users around the world.