The Great Northern Salmon story

Millinocket has been seeking aquaculture development for years. The American company Great Northern Salmon Inc was created when the founders of Xcelerate Aqua found a site in the area with unique development advantages in terms of risk mitigation, cost, and time to market. A strong partnership emerged with the local economic development entity Our Katahdin / One North in 2022.

After site and environmental assessments were conducted in 2022, it was confirmed that the chosen site did not have environmental risks of concern. An old 24-acre settlement lagoon could be repurposed as a construction site for a land-based fish farming facility. Meetings with many stakeholders in the town and region made it clear that there was significant support for Great Northern Salmon’s proposed plans and the positive contributions to the community. The availability of 100 % renewable local hydro was also a strong decision point.

As we look to the future, sustainability goes beyond the choice of producing seafood in land-based systems. The footprint of the entire value chain must be addressed. The company has taken the social and environmental stewardship agenda further to leverage a number of recycling innovations, lower power use, and a best-in-class CO2 footprint. Cutting-edge recirculation technology is being applied to close up the production systems step by step to protect the fish and the environment.

The company is currently developing a 10,000 metric ton salmon capacity facility. With the significant cost benefits on the site, this moderate scale delivers competitive metrics compared to larger proposals, at lower risk. The site has room for doubling the production capacity in the future.

When the company experienced strong interest in its future product, agreements were entered into for future market off-take. Great Northern Salmon will be a product coming from clean and cold water resources in Maine, sold in the eastern US.