Nordic food company HKScan has signed an agreement with Scandinavian Aquasystems AB to sell fish products under the Gårdsfisk brand and produce meal components from fish farmed in Sweden.
The agreement will also see HKScan acquire a minority share in the company, with a stake of slightly more than 10%.
Gårdsfisk specialises in fish farming with a recirculating water system and its own environmentally-friendly farming concept.
Lars Appelqvist, EVP of HKScan Sweden, said, "Consumers want increasingly varied food. The journey of transformation that HKScan has begun, as illustrated by its collaboration with Gårdsfisk, is certainly historic for HKScan as a well-known meat company, but it feels natural as consumer habits change.
"The future HKScan will be a versatile food company, offering its customers and consumers high-quality meat, fish and plant-based products."
The agreement will see HKScan expand its product portfolio to include fish products.
Fish products under the Gårdsfisk brand will be transferred to HKScan's Swedish unit at the beginning of 2022.
CEO Tero Hemmilä commented, "Gårdsfisk is an example of HKScan's partnership strategy in Sweden. Our strategic goal is to expand through partnerships into new food businesses and raw material bases.
"We provide a strong commercial platform for developing and forward-looking companies, whose products and raw materials will become part of our food portfolio through the partnership. Partnerships also enable the scaling up of commercially attractive products and concepts."
Responsible Fish Farming
Fish sold under the Gårdsfisk brand is produced responsibly and in close cooperation with Swedish farms.
The fish are farmed in tanks using an environmentally-friendly farming method.
Gårdsfisk was awarded the Årets Klimatbonde title in Sweden last year, and it also received Svenskt Sigill climate certification.
Locally produced fish offers a new opportunity for farms to modernise their operations, as fish consumption as a source of protein is on the rise, HKScan added.