Westman Islands producer Vinnslustöðin has taken delivery of 6600 tonnes of blue whiting in just the first four days of fishmeal production for this season.
Landings were from the company’s own vessels Gullberg and Huginn, with 4500 tonnes between them, plus Faroese pelagic vessel Tróndur í Gøtu by-passed the landing queue in Fuglafjörður and brought an additional 2100 tonnes to the Westman Islands.
According to factory manager Unnar Hólm Ólafsson, there was an added tension this season, as a new elements of the production layout that were installed earlier this winter were tried out for the first time.
The factory was started up slightly earlier than planned when it was clear that Tróndur í Gøtu would be arriving to land ahead of the company’s own vessels, and discharging was within an hour of the Faroese vessels docking.
‘Production went better than we could have hoped,’ he said.
‘It goes without saying that there’s some fine-tuning needed, but that’s perfectly normal. It all looks good. The new system has a higher capacity, requires less energy and supports operational reliability.’
He added that production isn’t as energy-economic as it should be, as electricity supplies to fishmeal production are restricted.
‘That includes us, and it means that we have to burn more oil that we would otherwise have to. And this is in a country that prides itself on green energy!’ he said.