Skretting Norway starts silo-silo feed deliveries
Skretting Norway began phasing in the option of silo-silo feed deliveries in June. The feed is transported in a purpose-built vessel, the Eidsvaag Polaris, loading from a feed silo at the Averøy feed plant into silos on the boat and then directly into storage silos at the customer, with no bags involved. Silo-silo delivery increases operational efficiency at the feed mill and the transport efficiency of the vessel while reducing the need for plastics made from petrochemicals and the time taken to unload at customer farms.
Eidsvaag Polaris, Skrettings purpose-built silo-silo vessel
When operating at full capacity the new boat will save the production and use of 275,000 plastic bags a year while delivering 130,000 to 150,000 tonnes of feed. The new silo battery and related equipment was part of the recent upgrade at the Averøy plant. Deliveries began in June with a test run; step one of the phasing in process. It was followed by further test deliveries with increasing quantities of feed together with fine tuning of the equipment and a different way of working.
“Skipping the bag filling and emptying process saves time and energy. It also dispenses with the need for forklift trucks to move feed bags into and out of storage and onto the boat,” observes Viggo Halseth, Managing Director of Skretting Northern Europe, Australia and Japan, adding that the new boat can carry more feed for the same amount of fuel. “Together, these changes add up to greater efficiency and a smaller CO2 footprint per tonne of delivered feed. Silo-silo feed delivery is a further step forward in the efficiency of fish farming and once again Norway is the pioneer.
“Delivery directly into the customer’s silo improves efficiency for the fish farmer as well,” says Halseth. “The unloading speed is far faster than with bags, which means the vessel spends less time, and causes less distraction at the farm sites. If everything is in order at the farm, delivery time is halved compared with bag systems, freeing time for other more productive work. However, we will continue to deliver feed in bags as an option for as long as we have fish farmers that want it.”
Loading only requires one person thanks to on-board sensors and a new software application, which generates excellent traceability records. To unload, one person works on the vessel and one on the farm site, both are equipped with remote control systems. In a further benefit, silo-silo delivery eliminates potential hazards associated with bag handling.