Katahdin Salmon, Inc, is going to build an Atlantic Salmon fish farm using a recirculating aquaculture system (RAS) at the One North industrial site in Millinocket. The salmon will be hatched, raised, and processed on-site and sold both locally and to regional Northeast markets. The facility is projected to be producing salmon by 2026.
Katahdin Salmon founders Erik Heim and Marianne Naess have developed some of the most progressive aquaculture businesses in the world. The company plans to establish America’s first 100% renewable energy, land-based RAS facility in Millinocket, Maine, making it one of the most environmentally low-impact aquaculture production farms in the United States.
Yes. There will be about 70-80 full-time jobs once the facility is operating at full capacity. The jobs range from fish handling, processing, WTTP (wastewater treatment plant), technical and maintenance, administrative, and other jobs needed to maintain the facility. All jobs provide a livable wage with full benefits. Local hiring will be a priority.
There will be approximately 100-150 jobs during the construction process. Katahdin Salmon will contract with a construction management company to manage the build-out of the facility. More information on hiring and job availability will be provided as the project evolves.
Adding 70-80 jobs to the local economy will have an enormous impact on the community. Each middle-class job created by Katahdin Salmon contributes to every sector of the economy, from the tax base to schools to restaurants and grocery stores. For every dollar coming into the community through wages and investments, there is a multiplier effect. Additionally, wins attract more wins. Our Katahdin envisions a full campus of related businesses on the One North site, and already, there is collaboration between Katahdin Salmon and other potential tenants on the site. Locating an aquaculture facility on the site will bring more job opportunities in complementary industries.
The full life cycle of the salmon will be contained within the indoor facility – from hatch to harvest. The facility is compartmentalized to accommodate different stages of the salmon growth cycle. Tanks are connected by pipes that allow the salmon to swim from one growth stage area to the next, reducing handling and increasing safety and well-being for the fish. As the salmon grow, the stock is divided into more tanks, and the fish are transferred through pipes within the buildings. Before harvest, the fish swim through underground pipes to the purge and processing facility where they are harvested and processed.
The nutritional requirements of the fish can be met with a broad range of ingredients. Katahdin Salmon will source ingredients that have minimal impact on the environment. The small amount of marine ingredients that may be used would be processing byproducts or come from sustainable fisheries/aquaculture. Katahdin Salmon will replace these ingredients with more innovative solutions such as fermented single cell proteins, insect meals, and algae oils as soon as it becomes commercially viable. In addition, there will be no traces of antibiotics in the fish feed, no GMOs, no artificial coloring, and no soy from Brazil in the fish feed.
Katahdin Salmon plans to transport fish feed to Millinocket by train.
The proposed site in Millinocket is the best site for this kind of facility from an environmental, production, and investor perspective. Millinocket offers:
Yes. Fish raised in Millinocket will be sold locally, in Maine, and in the Northeast. Salmon will be transported by trucks to markets, providing a fresh and healthy product to regional consumers.
No. Lights are used inside the facility to create optimal and stable growth conditions for the fish, but the facility does not have windows that allow lights to be visible at night. All outdoor lights will be either downward-facing or motion-sensitive to ensure that there is no light pollution from the facility.
No. The fish tanks are clean and don´t omit any odors. Waste products are stored in sealed containers and sludge is immediately transferred to the digestor on site for processing.
RAS systems are extremely efficient, recirculating and reusing more than 99.5% of the water used in the facility. The 0.5% water remaining will be discharged after treatment with UV light, ultrafiltration to remove more than 99% of the nutrients, and removal of all pathogens under strict biosecurity protocols. Additionally, the fish are harvested before they are sexually mature, ensuring that no pheromones will be released into the river that could affect local fish.
No. The fish live their entire life from eggs to harvest inside of the fish production buildings and are transported through an internal piping system when they are transferred to larger tanks as they grow. The fish swim through pipes that are separate and unconnected to the outfall pipe that goes to the river.
No. Antibiotics are only used in case of an emergency, and historically, the managing party has never used antibiotics at any of the farms they have built.
All fish going to market will be antibiotic-free certified.
Yes. Katahdin Salmon has prioritized communication with the community and other stakeholders. We have had conversations with business and community leaders in the Katahdin region, tribal and environmental groups, and elected officials. The feedback so far has been encouraging. This is a community that welcomes development.
Katahdin Salmon is planning to keep the public informed about the project through their website, katahdinsalmon.com, through Our Katahdin updates, and public meetings during the buildout.