Massachusetts-based Australis Aquaculture will sign an MoU with Khanh Hoa province to invest an additional $100 million in the expansion of its sustainable aquaculture operations in Van Phong Bay.
Having established a group of sea leases in central Vietnam, Australis is developing a new regional production hub for barramundi farming. The company plans to increase its capacity to 50,000 tonnes of barramundi production annually.
Founder and CEO of Australis Josh Goldman told Thefishsite, "We are completing the licensing for an entirely new offshore production region in southern Vietnam. Taken together, we are on the path to having over 50,000 tonnes of permitted capacity in the country, which will enable us to leverage our infrastructure and experience with ocean farming over the longer term."
Australis Vietnam is one of the earliest foreign-invested enterprises present in Van Phong Economic Zone. After more than 15 years, it has invested about $200 million to apply the world's most advanced aquaculture technology to Vietnam's unique climate, conditions, and native species.
In June, the Asian Development Bank (ADB) and Australis signed a $15 million convertible note to promote climate-resilient, ocean-based barramundi and seaweed aquaculture in Vietnam. The investment will fund working capital to expand Australis’ operations at Van Phong Bay.
An additional $3 million grant will be provided by the Climate Innovation and Development Fund (CIDF), administered by the ADB. The CIDF grant to Australis’ subsidiary Greener Grazing LLC will support research and development into the cultivation of asparagopsis taxiformis seaweed for commercial ocean farming.
Australis has pioneered the development of modern, large-scale marine aquaculture in Vietnam and is the world’s largest barramundi producer. Also known as Asian sea bass, the species is adaptable and resilient, well suited to aquaculture farming, and has a high export value.
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