Blue Star says RAS growth taking longer
April 24, 2023 By Nestor Arellano
Miami-based recirculating aquaculture system (RAS) producer Blue Star Foods reported US$12.8 million in revenue for 2022 but also said its plans for RAS expansion is taking longer than previously planned.
In a financial report released April 18, the company highlighted that it “outperformed previously issued preliminary results” and achieved $1.4 million in revenue from its RAS operations. For the twelve months ended Dec. 31, 2022, Blue Star reported growth of 28 per cent to $12.8 million annual revenue. This is higher than the preliminary results previously issued of 20% to $12.0 million. The increase in revenue was primarily due to an increase in poundage sold during the year ended Dec. 31, 2022, according to the report.
“While our RAS expansion plans are taking longer than previously expected, we have made efforts to identify capital resources, both from private (non-dilutive) and government sources and currently hope to execute upon those over the next few months,” said John Keeler, chairman and chief executive officer of Blue Star.
Net loss for the year ended Dec. 31, 2022, increased by $10.6 million, to $13.2 million, compared to $2.6 million for the year ended Dec. 31, 2021.
“The increase in net loss is primarily attributable to a decline in gross profits, increase in operating expenses and funds deployed in the RAS projects and a significant impairment loss,” the report said.
Gross loss for the year ended Dec. 31, 2022 was $600,000 compared to gross profit of $2.0 million for the year ended Dec. 31, 2021. This increase in losses was attributed to higher cost of goods sold compared to the cost of goods sold in the year ended Dec. 31, 2021.
“2022 was a transition year for us, for as we increased revenue, but we had to deal with higher costs of goods sold and inflationary operating expenses. With that said, we are very pleased with the progress of our RAS business. Our soft-shell crab RAS operations commenced in March 2022, generated close to $1.0 million in revenue and is poised for expansion,” according to Keeler.
“As we look forward in 2023, we believe we remain on track to restore our legacy business to pre-pandemic levels, with inflation cooling off our operating expenses and to advance to the next stage in the construction phase of our transformational soft-shell crab RAS facility,” Keeler said.
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