Oslo Business Memo


Marine Sector Challenges, Opportunities and Solutions: Major issues stay the same

Specific challenges change, but will always be present, regardless of shifting developments and demands.

Specific challenges change, but will always be present, regardless of shifting developments and demands.

Aquaculture is our response to the bio-economy paradigm shift. Academia and business continues to deal with the challenges and opportunities.  Examples of new solutions are plentiful -follow our links!

Øystein Lie

Øystein Lie

Chairman Blue Frontier Media AS, Dean Faculty of veterinary medicine and biosciences, Norwegian University of Life Sciences,

Paul Midtlyng

Paul J. Midtlyng

Executive Manager Marlife and Aquamedic AS, Associate Professor, Norwegian University of Life Sciences

Although specific challenges change, some generic ones remain regardless of shifting production regimes and demands
over time and place.  For aquaculture pre harvest phase these are:

  • Disease control
  • Sustainable feed resources
  • Environmental impacts

Post harvest major issues are product quality and safety together with reputation of trust building, branding and
resulting mark ups on price and value to customer.
For the ingredients industry and bio discovery (bioprospecting) is long term investment ("patient capital") in science, technology a prerequisite since time to market is long.
The new fisheries need more focus on ecosystem based harvest (pursue the whole food chain) and on the Development of low foot print fishery technologies.
Private public partnership in striving for innovations and to build a robust solution provider sector to interplay with the demanding producers is a universal common denominator to the entire bio economy sector.

  • The blue potential

Aquaculture  is currently since several decades the fastest growing field of the world`s food supply. However, it still contributes only two percent compared to the terrestrial based food supply on global basis. Realizing that our globe is a “water planet” with oceanic and aquatic waters harboring most of the genetic diversity, this fact underlines the unravelled potential of the “blue” sector.

  • The future is bio economy

Preparing for long term solutions, the challenges of mankind is urgent: the escalating global food needs, the life style diseases, the foot print impacts of existing production systems. Last, not least: the world economy is currently struggling with "zero growth" and recurrent recessions based on overdue non-sustainable systems. Hence, we are ready for a new paradigm shift from the non-renewable to the renewable economy; from fossil based resources to living based resources, from “yesterday´s oil” to the “new oil”: sustainable bioproduction - the bio-economy.

  • Sustainability - for  environment and business

Substantial scaling of aquaculture is a promising response because of its favourable foot print when executed properly, because of its potential to reduce the pressure on wild living resources, and because of the restrictions of terrestrial based supply to cope with the increasing food demand.
 In the further expansion of aquaculture we have to address its major sustainability issues, not just because of our common obligations but because of pure economic reasons; to maintain production space, margins and stay competitive. These issues have fundamental impact on the bio mass control (pre harvest phase), and also on the quality, reputation, trust and brand building of the postharvest part including product marketing. Robust solutions of the former can secure cost-effective production and of the latter it provides mark-ups of value to customer, and price.


  • How can we advance the blue part of the emerging bio economies in a sustainable way and also provide sound business opportunities?

By continuously addressing the major challenges and opportunities of the “blue food” sector. Specific challenges change, but will always be present, regardless of shifting developments and demands. Please find links to some of the promising solutions to today`s challenges below, with information provided by members of the MarLife Biomarine Innovation Network.



Infectious disease control


Domestication, genetic enhancement and breeding



Novel, sustainable fish feeds


Environmental impact




Fish welfare, product quality and brand building