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Pure Salmon plans $250 million sustainable aquaculture plant in Lesotho

ImpactAlpha, July 16 – The Highlands of Lesotho, the land-locked Southern African country, are known for some of the purest natural water reserves in the world. Pure Salmons says it will invest $250 million in a 20,000-metric-ton Atlantic salmon facility that would be the first land-based “recirculating aquaculture system” in Africa, providing a local, sustainable source for the continent’s growing appetite for fresh fish.

When completed in 2023, the firm estimates the plant should employ 250, run completely on hydro-electric power and account for 8% of Lesotho’s gross domestic product. Pure Salmon says it will offer shares to the community through direct ownership of the facility.

Pure Salmon is a portfolio company of 8F Asset Management, a Singapore-based impact investing asset management firm. The Lesotho site is being developed with the Lesotho National Development Corporation.

Land-based recirculating aquaculture systems are cleaner than traditional aquafarming, “but have largely failed to attract private capital at a sufficient scale to reach their full commercial and impact potential,” according to “Towards a Blue Revolution,” a sustainable aquaculture guide from The Nature Conservancy and Encourage Capital.

In October, Pure Salmon announced it would invest $152 million in a Japan-based facility. The firm’s first plant, in Poland, is fully operational. Other projects are underway in China, Bahrain, the U.S. and Europe. 

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