Blue Ridge Aquaculture has announced the official opening of Blue Ridge Aquafeeds, a feed mill that will supply the company’s internal feed demand as well as the growing aquaculture market. This is the first time that feed milling has been integrated into a successful recirculating aquaculture operation, and marks a milestone in the development of indoor aquaculture.
Total capital investment for this project, which will create several new jobs to support mill operations, is approximately $5,000,000. A celebration of the opening was held on Monday, July 31st at the site of the new mill.
The new Blue Ridge Aquafeeds facility is an innovative aquafeed mill that will leverage the advantages of closed system aquaculture to further develop the RAS industry. It incorporates innovations in the areas of facility design, system integration, product traceability, and local ingredient supply. The new milling facility will supply the company’s current tilapia production, and was scaled to support the company’s future growth plans. Blue Ridge Aquafeeds will also supply feeds to other customers with a focus on high quality diets.
“Blue Ridge Aquaculture’s expansion is another step forward for Virginia as we solidify our standing as a key player in the nation’s seafood sector,” said Virginia Secretary of Agriculture and Forestry Basil Gooden. “Aquaculture production represents an opportunity for Virginia to capitalize on the need to feed a growing population with limited resources. We are lucky to have an innovative company like Blue Ridge Aquaculture as a member of the agriculture community in Virginia. I’m pleased we could match Henry County’s investment into their business through an AFID grant, and I look forward to their continued success.”