Clearwater Seafoods Inc., Canada, announced plans to invest in a new and innovative vessel for its Canadian clam fleet.
The $70 million investment will replace an existing 28-year-old clam vessel with a state-of-the-art factory vessel designed to deliver significant productivity and efficiency improvements through a more efficient harvesting platform.
This investment follows the launch of the Belle Carnell in July 2015, which allowed Clearwater to increase its catch of Arctic Surf Clams, Cockle Clams and Propeller Clams. The combined investments complete Clearwater's plan to sustainably harvest 100% of its Canadian Surf Clam quota employing what is said to be the most advanced and proprietary clam technology in the world.
Following this vessel replacement, Clearwater's entire Canadian fleet will be fully renewed with no further vessel replacements planned over the next five years ending 2020. Including replacements and planned refits, Clearwater has invested $169 million in its fleet over the past five years, creating a modern and technologically advanced fishing fleet.
The investment will begin during the third quarter of 2016, and is expected to be complete in time for the vessel to enter service by the second quarter of 2018.
"Global demand for seafood is outpacing supply, creating favorable market dynamics for vertically integrated producers,” says Ian Smith, chief executive officer. “Clearwater is well positioned to take advantage of this opportunity because of its licenses, premium product quality, diversity of sustainably harvested species, global sales footprint and year-round harvest and delivery capability. This new investment completes Clearwater's fleet modernization program, and positions the company to execute with excellence on our extraordinary growth plans over the next five years."