Norwegian fishing gear supplier Selstad is investing in its own production of rope in Norway – this year recruiting three production staff and increasing output by 38%.
‘It gives us 100% control of our value chain, and thus also the quality of the Selstad rope,’ said Erik Engebretsen, head of rope and safety equipment at Selstad, who joined the company in August last year after several years as a manager at Fjordkraft and in the Norwegian navy, before he stepped in as a manager of the only remaining rope factory in Northern Europe.
‘In addition, it’s positive that everything that is local. Keeping production in Norway makes us less vulnerable in terms of delivery security. Local production gives us high flexibility and that is really important to our customers.’
Selstad is a major supplier and user of ropes of various kinds, including seine rope and ropes used in fishing gears and for aquaculture installations. Erik Engebretsen stressed that the expansion has been carried out in co-operation with the rope factory’s manager Frode Johnsen, who has more than thirty years of experience in the production and development of ropes.
‘The team has unique expertise in this field and the combination of established knowledge with new ideas provides an exciting starting point,’ Erik Engebretsen said.
At the same time as production is being scaled up, product development also takes up much of the focus and is something Frode Johnsen works with on a daily basis.
‘We are in the process of developing a rope for crabbers, and especially for snow crab and king crab fishing. The aim is to produce a rope that will stay stable for longer and at the same time reduce twisting,’ Frode Johnsen said.
Selstad produces its own fibre, which is particularly tough and durable, and this is well suited for the production of crab ropes.
‘This is the same fibre that we use in our seine rope. We regularly get feedback from customers that the Selstad rope lasts more than twice as long as other ropes,’ he said.
This summer Selstad took on three new staff at the rope factory in Måløy.
‘It’s important for us to help create jobs in strong coastal communities such as Måløy,’ Erik Engebretsen said.