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Net pens made completely of recycled plastic in the works


March 22, 2022
By Liza Mayer


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Tech provider AKVA Group of Norway says it will produce an entire net pen out of recycled plastic from discarded pens Photo: AKVA

As part of an industry-wide effort to make aquaculture as environmentally sustainable as possible, the AKVA Group of Norway says it will produce entire net pens using recycled plastics, an initiative meant to also prove the point that such recycled materials meet quality standards.

Under the standard (NS9415) that defines the components of a fish farm, including net pens, only virgin plastic should be used. But the AKVA Group says it will challenge this requirement by showing that recycled plastic from a discarded net pens from aquaculture facilities has the qualities that meet the requirements.

The technology provider will use “carefully tested high-quality plastic granulate” made from old net pens that recycler Oceanize has reprocessed in its factory. 

AKVA noted that it already uses recycled plastic on the pen walkways, but this is the first time it will produce entire pens out of recycled plastic from discarded pens. 

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“Pens today are not a big litter problem, but there is a great potential for using the plastic in new pens. In this project we will achieve short, national value chains as the project participants are all established in Norway,” says Trude Olafsen, project manager, AKVA Group. 

The company hopes to share the knowledge on this innovation with other fish farming nations.