Danish fish feed group Aller Aqua acquires Europe's biggest trout processor

By Jane Byrne contact

- Last updated on GMT

© GettyImages/gradyreese
© GettyImages/gradyreese

Related tags: trout, Aller Aqua, Denmark

Denmark’s Aller Aqua group has acquired 100% of the shares in ASC certified smoke trout producer, Danforel.

The deal was finalized at the beginning of last month.

Financial details of the transaction are not being disclosed.

Aller Aqua CEO, Hans Erik Bylling, said the deal will give both parties further opportunities to optimize fish farming, processing, and marketing.

He told FeedNavigator that the knowledge that Aller Aqua will gain through ownership of Danforel will be applied elsewhere in terms of the company’s overall business.

The family-owned Aller Aqua also revealed it will invest further to expand Danforel’s fry facilities, as well to optimize the trout company's production. The investment in the fry facilities is aimed at giving Danforel more reliable production flow, said the CEO. Optimized production will increase processing capacity and evidently reduce costs, he added.

Danforel's Erik Hansen will remain in the role of chief executive.  

Established in 1939, Grindsted, Denmark-based Danforel has six aquaculture facilities and a 15,000-square meter slaughterhouse. The company currently produces 4,000 metric tons (MT) of Aquaculture Stewardship Council (ASC) certified trout.

Aller Aqua, meanwhile, produces fish feed for more than 70 countries worldwide from its factories in Denmark, Poland, Germany, Egypt, China, Zambia, and Serbia. Collectively, these facilities provide the company, which reports turnover of €185m (US$197.2m), with a production capacity in excess of 300,000 MT.

Trout feed innovation 

The feed player has been actively innovating in the trout space. 

Last December, we reported that it was set to test green protein from Danish producer, BioRefine, in rainbow trout diets, with nutrient digestibility and growth studies to be run at Aller Aqua’s trial station located in Büsum, Germany. 

The raw material being evaluated is an organic protein concentrate made of grass harvested from 3,000 hectares of land in Denmark. Out of this, BioRefine, produces 7,000 tons of green protein concentrate applicable for animal nutrition per year.

The organic protein concentrate is an entirely new and locally produced raw material, with a similar nutrient profile to soybean meal, reported Aller Aqua then.  And, due to its regionality, it could be a valuable raw material for reducing the carbon-footprint of fish feed, it said.

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