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Nordic Aquafarms secures permits for California RAS project

May 28, 2024  By RAStech staff

The site of Nordic Aquafarms' planned RAS facility in Humboldt County. (Image: Nordic Aquafarms

Nordic Aquafarms Inc. has announced that it has all three coastal development permits needed to proceed with its fish farming project in California. These permits are crucial to start building and operating its aquaculture facility. 

The company plans to raise yellowtail kingfish in the recirculating aquaculture system (RAS) facility in California. 

The U.S. seafood trade reached a deficit of over $20 billion as imports rose above exports in 2023. Nordic Aquafarms said it plans to replace imports with fresh, local seafood, under the strict environmental regulations. It said establishing a farm in California is not an easy task, regardless of the increasing market for seafood, particularly on the west coast.


“It is difficult to overstate the significance of Nordic Aquafarms’ achievement in securing permits for our project. We have successfully navigated the complex regulatory landscape where many others have struggled, giving us a unique first-mover advantage in the California RAS market for the next 10 to 20 years,” the press release states.

California has very rigorous environmental laws and one of the most complex permitting processes. During the recent California Coastal Commission (CCC) hearing, members noted that many projects often face significant challenges in the state.

Brenda Chandler, CEO of Nordic Aquafarms, said the recent development is a significant accomplishment. “I am proud of this team and appreciate the confidence and support we’ve gained over the last few years from Humboldt County.”

Chandler hopes to have approvals for the remaining permits this summer. “Working with the Harbor District to continue this momentum and bring a thriving waterfront to the Samoa Peninsula is coming closer to fruition, and we look forward to contributing to California’s agricultural front,” she said.

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