Vertical Challenges - Focus on Safe and Sustainable Seafood Sourcing
As Beaver Street Fisheries continues its focus on safe and sustainable seafood sourcing, the company’s owned subsidiary, Tropic Seafood, Ltd. (TSL), is in the preliminary stages of testing aquaculture (fish farming) activities. Building on its longstanding reputation as the largest lobster tail and seafood processor in the Bahamas and the Caribbean, TSL is developing strategies to support the ever-growing trend of aquaculture as primary sources for seafood around the world. The goal, if successful, is to create a vertical integration system within the company in which Beaver Street Fisheries operates the supply chain from farming to distribution for seafood.
“We will always be top producers of spiny lobster tails, but we need to look down the road three to five years and adjust our business plan to meet the growing seafood demand worldwide,” says Jon Chaiton, Director of Quality Assurance and Aquaculture for TSL.
Focusing on native Bahamian fish, the company is investigating the ability to support aquaculture for several species including: The Nassau Grouper (Epinephilus Striatus), the Almaco Jack (Seriola Riviolana), Mahi Mahi (Coryphaena Hippurus), the Pompano (Trachinotus Carolinus) and others. Trials for Seriola (also known as the Yellowtail Kingfish or Hamachi) and Nassau Grouper have already begun.
The company’s long-term plan calls for a hatchery, additional processing facilities to be built, and robust off-shore grow-out cages that are submersible to avoid any adverse weather conditions such as hurricanes.
The comprehensive approach to aquaculture and food distribution underway at TSL is also receiving support from the Bahamian government as it recognizes the potential and importance to develop fish farming on the islands. In fact, the government has recently listed aquaculture as a priority in the country due to its potential for socio-economic benefits.
As the company continues its efforts, it will focus on gauging TSL’s ability to foster the growth of fish, in safe and sustainable farming environments that meet customers expectations. If accomplished, Beaver Street will work with TSL to sell the products domestically (in The Bahamas), and export through their logistics channels, as a premium fresh fish program to the United States and Europe.