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June 4, 2023
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Partnership for Sheffield biotech and Chilean salmon expert

Benchmark Holdings, the AIM-listed Sheffield-based biotech firm, has partnered with AquaChile, the world’s sixth largest salmon producer, to generate a “world-class” salmon breeding operation.

The joint venture, which is to be named Benchmark Genetics Chile, will produce eggs inside the Chaicas high-quality biosecure land-based facilities in Chile.

It are going to be backed-up from Benchmark Genetic’s land-based breeding operations in Iceland and genetic technology from Benchmark’s Akvaforsk Genetics in Norway.

Benchmark Genetics Chile is expected to deliver AquaChile’s entire Atlantic salmon egg requirement along with customers. The business will market Coho Salmon and Rainbow Trout eggs adapted for Chilean conditions.

The new Company will combine leading-edge technology in salmon genetics and genomics from Benchmark and AquaChile to get progress sooner or later on most of the key traits for the Chilean Industry, including effectiveness against diseases which include SRS and sea lice.

Malcolm Pye, Benchmark CEO, said: “We are certainly content to announce today’s Chilean partnership; combining AquaChile’s existing premium quality land-based production and locally adapted genetics business with Benchmark’s leadership in salmon genetics and long-standing research from the field. Together, we believe we are going to generate a world-class operation in Chile.

“Genetics give the best kick off point for production regarding disease resistance, production efficiency and processing quality and yield.

“This agreement establishes a robust platform for Benchmark in Chile and we all look ahead to working with the market to aid its sustainable development for any long-term future.”

Agustn Ugalde, CEO of AquaChile added: “This partnership will grant AquaChile to stay improving the genetics in our fish and, your, the productivity and effectiveness in the core salmon and trout farming business.

“We have found in Benchmark an accomplice which includes a solid qualifications and also the right target the main aspects of our business, like health, nutrition and genetics.

“This transaction also validates our efforts currently in building local ability of the creation of salmon eggs to the top quality and biosecurity standards.”

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