Workshop on “AquaFuture – Challenges ahead” in Bergen, Norway

Aquafuture workshop

On April 9th, 2024, our project partners from the NORCE Fish Biology and Aquaculture Group (FBA) hosted an insightful workshop on “AquaFuture – Challenges Ahead” in Bergen, Norway. This dynamic event brought together a diverse audience of stakeholders, including students, aquaculture feed companies, aquaculture producers, aquaculture probiotic/additive producers, aquaculture technology providers and funding agencies at the Clarion Hotel Bergen Airport.

About the NORCE Fish Biology and Aquaculture Group (FBA)

The Fish Biology & Aquaculture group (FBA) has over the last 20 years built a strong basic and applied expertise in fish biology, integrating physiology, endocrinology, neuroscience, behavior, and nutrition in fish for a systems understanding of environmental, sustainable feeds and genetic impacts on development, parr-smolt transformation and postsmolt performance.

Together with the Division of Technology from NORCE, the department integrates biology with technology for digitalization of biology applications in aquaculture through machine vision and AI. The department’s competence contributes to solutions and innovation in modern aquaculture via projects such as: SFI-CtrlAqua, H2020-iFishIENCi and BlueRemediomics. 

Workshop Discussions

The workshop kicked off with a stimulating discussion on the impact of spiny dogfish interactions with aquaculture installations in Norway, setting the stage for a day of insightful presentations and discussions. Presentation topics included welfare, feed, and innovative projects and initiatives driving the future of aquaculture, such as BlueRemediomics and the “Brain2Gut model” – A 3R integrative model offering a time- and cost-effective approach to test aquafeeds. Sessions on welfare delved into the world of fish microbiota and explored thermal limits for post-smolts transfer. In the feed session, attendees explored the potential of novel feeds to meet fish nutritional requirements while considering welfare implications. Case studies on single-cell proteins (SCPs) and insects showcased innovative approaches to sustainable feed production.

BlueRemediomics Relevance

As part of work package 4, the BlueRemediomics project aims to promote healthy microbiome approaches in aquaculture as well as promoting efficiency of nutrient uptake from sustainable feeds in aquaculture. As part of this, different rearing strategies for Atlantic salmon are being compared at NORCE facilities and at commercial scale, such as: (i) freshwater smolt (Recirculating Aquaculture Systems, RAS) to seawater (sea cages); (ii) freshwater smolt (RAS) to brackish water postsmolt (RAS) to seawater (sea cages). The results aim to determine the effects of different rearing strategies on the microbiome and cascading effects on production, as well as to define biomarkers of a healthy aquaculture system. As part of this workshop, BlueRemediomics partner NORCE presented on the potential of harnessing the natural microbiome to enhance salmon digestion and robustness, offering a promising solution to improve aquaculture sustainability.


The AquaFuture workshop fostered collaboration and innovation in addressing the complex challenges of the aquaculture industry. By bringing together stakeholders from different backgrounds, the workshop fostered meaningful dialogue and laid the groundwork for future advancements in sustainable aquaculture practices.