Marine Harvest Scotland and Scottish Sea Farms are among the Scottish salmon producers that in the last year have purchased the unique hardware free Flexilink mooring grid from Mørenot Aquaculture. The system, which has been a great success in Norway, was developed after years of research and development in collaboration with research institute Sintef and Norwegian fish farming companies
In 2013, Mørenot Aquaculture – the Norwegian total supplier of specialist aquaculture nets, moorings and services – sold the Flexilink mooring grid into the Scottish market. The system is a custom-built, hardware free mooring grid based on each individual site’s environmental factors. Some of the unique benefits include reduced components in the mooring system which reduces mechanical wear, gives great security and leads to lower purchase and life cycle costs.
The system consists of flexible fibre straps of 50-280 tons breaking load. It has been thoroughly tested and can be delivered in short time at a fair price.
Mørenot Aquaculture supplies complete mooring systems or individual components such as ropes, chains, anchors, shackles, thimbles, plates, bolts etc. and can assist in the installation of the grid.
In the first year in the Scottish market, the company has supplied seven Flexilink mooring systems to Marine Harvest Scotland and two systems to Scottish Sea Farms, according to Iain Macleod, manager at Net Services Scotland, who are the UK distributor and manufacturer of the Flexilink grid from Mørenot Aquaculture. He is expecting to supply an even greater number of systems in 2014.
Macleod, who has assisted in the installation of some of the systems, says the assembly is easy and has been straightforward and that the mooring grids have been well received due to its innovative and hardware fee design. “The system won’t suffer the same deterioration at sea compared with traditional systems and will reduce maintenance costs, which is a real benefit,” he adds.
Keith Wardhaugh, logistic manager at Scottish Sea Farms, says the company chose to try the system after doing thorough research and visiting Norway to take a closer look at it at one of Marine Harvest’s sites: “It is a new and different system. It has less hardware and in theory it should save on costs and lead to less maintenance,” Wardhaugh says. The company has deployed one system and is waiting to deploy the second, he adds.
Investing in R & D
“The feedback from the producers is great and we are currently working on quotes for another eight systems in Scotland, in addition to quotes already given,” says Nina Hildre, Mørenot’s export manager.
Hildre says the company invests heavily in research and development and currently have several projects on the go involving for example net design, different materials in nets such