Cargill, Skretting cooperate to reduce aquafeed transport emissions along the Norwegian coast

Eidsvaag is building two new feed vessels for both companies to use in collaboration, which avoids having to run separate transport routes, thereby reducing carbon emissions.

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Illustrations of how the two identical vessels will look by Kongsberg Maritime
May 14, 2024

The shipping company Eidsvaag AS will build two new feed vessels for feed suppliers Skretting and Cargill. Due to be delivered in 2026, the vessels will have diesel-electric propulsion systems with large battery packs and engines with fuel flexibility so they can run on biodiesel if so desired.

The two ships will be part of the Fjordfrende partnership established in 2019. Here, competitors Skretting and Cargill are collaborating to deliver fish feed via 14 vessels operated by the shipping company Eidsvaag AS. By working in this way, the companies avoid having to run separate transport routes in and out of the same fjords along the Norwegian coast, thereby significantly reducing CO2 emissions.

"These will be state-of-the-art vessels with good amenities for the crew and a cabin capacity for 14 people. The new vessels will help reduce our carbon footprint and set us up well for the future," said Vidar Eidsvaag, CEO of Eidsvaag AS.

According to Eidsvaag, the new vessels will be among the largest in the company's fleet and will be able to load feed both in sacks and in silos. Vessel size has been decided based on what is most efficient when delivering feed to between 400 and 500 fish farms along the coast.

The boats will be built by Zamakona Shipyard in Bilbao, Spain. The first vessel will be completed in the first half of 2026, and the second one in the latter half of the year.

A hull optimized for efficient propulsion is one of several measures that will reduce both energy consumption and emissions from the vessels. Furthermore, each of the 860 kW capacity batteries will reduce diesel consumption by stepping in at times when energy demand peaks. Heat recovery from the exhaust will also provide interior heating. Thanks to these measures, these two ships qualify for grants from both the Norwegian Enova and the NOx fund.

The boats have been designed so that the type of fuel used can be changed relatively easily if more environmentally friendly and competitive alternatives become available in the future – hydrogen being one such alternative.

Overall, Eidsvaag expects that there will be significant savings in fuel consumption and emissions, however, the exact amount will depend on the routes the boats take and is therefore difficult to estimate.

"It's been 10 years since we last built a new boat, but this shows that the Fjordfrende collaboration is very much up and running. Modern and more environmentally friendly vessels can help us when competing for qualified employees. These vessels will also be able to deliver to more exposed locations than other vessels in our fleet," said Vidar Eidsvaag, CEO of Eidsvaag AS.

“Fjordfrende has now been operational for almost five years and has ensured a robust and efficient delivery system for Skretting and Cargill – despite some extremely demanding years in the supply chains and with higher inflation than we have previously been used to. Now is the time to take new steps, and the Fjordfrende platform provides Eidsvaag with the opportunity to invest in the necessary new capacity that will not only strengthen the overall delivery capability of Fjordfrende for all locations along the coast but will also help reduce emissions through new technology and more efficiency," said Håvard Walde, CEO of Skretting Norway.

"We are very pleased that the Fjordfrende collaboration can invest in increased capacity that will also help reduce the climate footprint of our value chain. It's easy to forget how important Norwegian salmon and trout are to the world's food supply. To contribute to safe and nutritious meals for a growing population, Norway must do its part to increase the supply of fish on the world market. Efficient feed logistics is an important part of the value chain and helps to ensure good nutrition for salmon along the entire Norwegian coast," said Tarjei Eide, CEO of Cargill in Norway.

Facts about the vessels:

  • Length: 71.10 m
  • Width: 17.60 m
  • Depth: 5.80 m
  • Speed: 13.5 kn
  • Cargo: 2,000 tons of feed divided between sack and silo
  • Propulsion system: Hybrid diesel-electric
  • Cost estimate: 950 million for both vessels
  • Grants for each boat: NOK 21 million from two environmental funds