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Nueva Pescanova hits new octopus farming milestone

The company estimates it can start commercializing farmed octopus in 2023.

Nueva Pescanova, in collaboration with the Spanish Oceanographic Institute (IEO) in octopus farming research, has hit a new milestone in culturing the species, the company said Thursday.

Based on recent developments, the company plans to start commercial production of farmed octopus in 2023, it said.

In 2018, Nueva Pescanova announced octopus farmed at research facilities had reached market size for the first time. Now, one of those octopus has reproduced in captivity, closing, for the first time ever, the production cycle in octopus farming.

The milestone means farmed octopus is being used as broodstock, eliminating the need to collect eggs from the wild.

The eggs laid by the farmed octopus are expected to hatch in a month’s time, giving way to the octopus larvae.

Nueva Pescanova and the IEO are currently working with 50 farmed octopus from 2018.

The company, which has a market range of wild octopus products sourced mainly in Namibia by its own fleet, plans to focus on the reproduction of octopus as one of its main lines of investigation at its Pescanova Biomarine Center.

The valuable species is currently subject to the high volatility of fishing seasons and decreasing stocks.

At the moment, the survival rate of wild octopus is 0.0001 percent, while the results obtained by Nueva Pescanova show a survival rate of 50 percent, the company said.

“We will continue to investigate on how to keep improving octopus welfare, studying and replicating their natural habitat, with a vision to start commercializing farmed octopus by 2023," said Ignacio Gonzalez, CEO of Nueva Pescanova.

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