In competition between 8 companies at Seafood Innovation Day NASF 2021, the seafood industry’s own innovation award went to Kuehnle AgroSystems from Hawaii for their fermentation technology to produce natural astaxanthin for the aquafeeds market.

Kuehnle AgroSystems has developed a patented low-cost fermentation technology to produce natural astaxanthin for the aquafeeds market. Their breakthrough technology is high yield production of algae by dark fermentation. The fermentation process enables greater output volumes and lower cost that light-dependent algae production methods.

Astaxanthin is commonly added in a synthetic form for improving coloration of salmonids and crustaceans. Natural algae astaxanthin is too scarce and too expensive for the aquafeeds.

The competition for this year´s Seafood Innovation Award was very tight, but the audience at Seafood Innovation Day and the jury have together voted forward one company:
The winner has developed a new and innovative technology that enables drastic improvements to the production of an important ingredient in the seafood industry. To increase the consumption of seafood in a growing global population, we need to produce healthy, tasty and sustainable seafood. We need natural and sustainable produced key ingredients – one of them which the winner is producing – so the market potential is huge. Their fermentation technology presents a breakthrough as they enable cost-efficient and high-volume production of natural astaxanthin for the aquafeed market.

The audience at Seafood Innovation Day together with a jury, voted for the winner of Seafood Innovation Award, June 8th, at North Atlantic Seafood Forum, the world´s largest seafood conference. The seafood industry itself has taken the initiative for the award aiming to stimulate and recognize knowledge-based innovation and entrepreneurship.

The winner of the award receives NOK 100.000, membership in NCE Seafood Innovation, participation at North Atlantic Seafood Forum 2022, and opportunity to present themselves to the industry at NASF next year. Partner of the Seafood Innovation Award is DNB, Pareto, North Atlantic Seafood Forum and NCE Seafood Innovation.

– “The competition for Seafood Innovation Award was very tight this year,” says Solveig Holm, Project Manager at NCE Seafood Innovation, – “but the audience and the expert jury concluded on a very qualified winner of the award.”

-We are very happy to receive this recognition of our work, says Adelheid (Heidi) Kuehnle, CEO at Kuehnle AgroSystems Inc., -and we are looking forward to take part in the NCE Seafood Innovation network during the next years.

–“The Seafood Innovation Award is a contribution to entrepreneurs, and an encouragement for more entrepreneurs to explore innovative solutions for the seafood industry,” says Nina Stangeland, CEO at NCE Seafood Innovation. – “Kuehnle AgroSystems is a very good candidate to the award.”

NCE Seafood Innovation
NCE Seafood Innovation is a business cluster for the seafood industry. Together with our members and partners, we are working together for sustainability and innovation to make an impact to drive forward digital transformation and to improve fish welfare in the seafood industry. WE have around 100 partners and members from the industry, academic institutions, the finance sector, public sector as well as entrepreneurs.

For further information:
Solveig Holm, Project Manager, NCE Seafood Innovation, +47 920 58 531,,