Our FishThe original stocks from Bolaks and Jakta have formed the basis for what are today SalmoBreed's populations. The first one was AS Bolaks which was founded in 1975 by Reidar Holmefjord, Trygve Holmefjord and Magne Bolstad.
This was in the fish farming industry’s childhood, and the entrepreneurs from the Fusa municipality, in Hordaland, Western Norway, had to do it from scratch. There was not much roe to be purchased at that time. Therefore, they retrieved wild salmon from rivers and produced roe and smolt, in addition to creating cages and settting nets.
The heavy and lengthy work resulted in the acclaimed Bolaks stock, which was important for SalmoBreed when Bolaks in 1999 co-founded the new breeding company.
The fish farming company Jakta Fiskeoppdrett was founded in Osterøy, West Norway, by few people. They played with the initials of their names and created the name J-A-K-T-A that would later become a very famous salmon stock
Some of them were keen anglers, and everyone was interested in the cultivation work. The first task of the company was the production of rainbow trout in a little lake in Fotlandsvågen in 1977. In 1979, the production moved out to the sea and in addition to the trout, salmon was put in cages.
FAMOUS SALMON RIVERS
The first time breeding material was collected for Jakta stock was in 1979. The stock has background from smolt and roe from the famous salmon rivers Vosso in Hordaland and Årøyelva in Sogn og Fjordane, both in West Norway. Both known for big salmon with late sexual maturation.
Jakta Fiskeoppdrett was a co-founder of the Norwegian Fish Farming Breeding Station in 1986 and joined the SalmoBreed cooperation in 2001.
The current roe producers for SalmoBreed are Bolaks, Salten Stamfisk and Erfjord Stamfisk, which was established in 1987 and is located in Suldal Municipality, Rogaland County, West Norway.
Roe production is becoming increasingly more complicated. SalmoBreed’s breeding program is taken care by the sister company Akvaforsk Genetic Center (AFGC), one of the world’s leading competence centers within breeding in aquaculture. SalmoBreed also collaborates with other research institutes, and has also several projects together with the Institute Nofima.
Using genomic selection, continuous efforts are made to solve issues like ISA, PD and sea lice. This has resulted in products that are constantly being improved.
SalmoBreed takes in account more than 20 properties for the next generation of salmon. The most important are:
Growth: The breeding work has in the course of the last 40 years halved production time from smolt to harvest-ready products.
Robustness: Fish survival is crucial. SalmoBreed tests annually the material from families against viruses IPN, PD and ISA. SalmoBreed was also the first company that started testing and selection of breeding material against salmon lice.
Quality Features: Fish farmers require fish with as much colour as possible. Everyone wants as much filet as possible, while some want fish with much fat and others with less fat. The wishes of our customers are increasingly differentiated, and “sharpening” of different properties is becoming increasingly important.
In addition to the traditional family based breeding program, SalmoBreed uses modern breeding technology such as QTL (Quantitative Trait Loci). This is a technique for locating regions on chromosomes where one can find genes that are important for the heritability of different properties. From 2013 genomic selection has been an important tool in the selection of breeding fish. This method is very precise and makes possible to select brood stock on an individual basis by varying a number of areas in the genome.
AFGC is responsible for calculating the breeding values ??and final selection of brood stock for the next generation in the breeding core. Roe producers receive smolt from selected families, and conduct a phenotypic selection, testing of individuals, in female fish.
THINGS TAKE TIME
R & D in salmon breeding and genetics takes a long time because of the relatively long generation interval for salmon, usually three to four years. One makes a selection of the parents and must measure the effects on the offspring to be able to evaluate the extent of the effect.
The changes takes time, but when they happen, they are often permanent. It’s like taking a new step on a ladder or in this case: «the breeding ladder».