Grønt Fra Laks

This interview details Grønt Fra Laks, an indoor farming company based in Norway. The interview is with Marius Johansen, General Manager at Grønt Fra Laks.

Source: Grønt Fra Laks

What is the origin story of Grønt Fra Laks?

On an autumn day in 2021, entrepreneur Marius Johansen had the brilliant idea to grow microgreens in the nutrient-rich sludge from the salmon industry. Marius enthusiastically presented the idea to the local fish farming company in kvarøy, Lurøy.

After trial and error with different types of plants and methods of cultivation, Marius had a breakthrough with sprouts and greens that grew quickly. With the companies Stamneset AS and Maria Olaisen AS on the team, the first factory was completed in Kvarøy in 2022. And in August 2023, the first boxes of watercress, radish, and broccoli could be shipped from the new factory at Fauske to customers all over Nordland.

Source: Grønt Fra Laks

What are some of the biggest challenges facing Grønt Fra Laks in the future? 

For now, the biggest challenge is 2 things:

1: We cannot find experienced employees, so we need to invest a lot in training. 

2: Access to seeds, substrate, etc.

Source: Grønt Fra Laks

Challenges with imports:

  • Dependent on imports to supply the population with enough food
  • More easily affected by pests
  • The quality of the imported goods varies widely
  • Use of pesticides
  • Higher emissions

Challenges in traditional cultivation:

  • Our climate is not suitable for cultivation all year round
  • Low yield for the time it takes to grow
  • Takes up a lot of space
  • Use of pesticides
  • Pollution with soil

Source: Grønt Fra Laks

What is unique about Grønt Fra Laks compared to competitors? 

First of all, the use of fish sludge as fertilizer. Most importantly probably that we have a big part of the market. We already have agreements that allow us to produce and sell for 10 million USD every year in our long-term agreements.

Source: Grønt Fra Laks

What is the current size of your growing area? 

We have 2 factories. One is approximately 300 sqm, 6 meters ceiling height. The other is approximately 1000 sqm with 8 meters ceiling height.

Source: Grønt Fra Laks

Do you use CO2 in your operation today -- if so, how much and what do you pay for it? What are your thoughts in CO2 usage in indoor farms? 

No, today we don't use bought CO2. However, we use mushrooms breaking down organic materials for us, producing green CO2. This also gives us one extra foot in the market by providing mushrooms.

Source: Grønt Fra Laks

Energy is a big topic in indoor farming right now. How much do you pay for electricity (kWh)? Is it mainly from the grid or renewables?

In northern Norway, the electricity is super cheap. Including tax etc, I think the highest price we have seen this far in 2023 is 1 NOK (10 cents USD) per kWh.

Source: Grønt Fra Laks

How can people connect with you or learn more about Grønt Fra Laks?

Yes! Our biggest part of the UN sustainability targets is to help the community with all we can – also help competitors etc.

Website: https://grontfralaks.no

Source: Grønt Fra Laks

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