March 30 2021
East Coast Shellfish Growers Newsletter
Industrial Plankton’s Photo Bioreactors a Game Changer for Hatcheries
Industrial Plankton produces photo bioreactors (PBRs) designed to grow algae for shellfish hatcheries. Our vision is to help stabilize the foundation of shellfish aquaculture by making the process of producing plankton more reliable, compact and bio-secure using technology. We love the shellfish industry and are truly proud to be working with such an amazing and diverse group of people. Following are the stories of just a few hatcheries using our algae-growing equipment.
Steve Malinowski and his wife, Sarah, founded Fishers Island Oyster Farm in 1981 and were some of the earliest pioneers of modern aquaculture. Steve has been using his PBR 1000L to help provide algae for his hatchery since 2016. The family-run farm relies on the hatchery to produce seed that is either sold to other farms or grown out to market size and sold to restaurants.
In 2017 the Malinowskis joined forces with six other shellfish growers to form a partnership with The Nature Conservancy, creating the Shellfish Growers Climate Coalition (SGCC). By sharing personal stories identifying the significant negative impacts of climate change, the Coalition’s goal is to urge legislators to enact policy to secure a low-carbon future. Industrial Plankton is proud to count Steve and Sarah as customers; we were lucky enough to get a chance to visit them and get a glimpse of what life is like on Fishers Island, at the east end of Long Island Sound in New York.
Lisa Bourassa, the hatchery manager at the Aquaculture Research Corporation (A.R.C.) in Dennis, Mass., has been using a PBR 1250L for the past few years to produce algae for quahogs, oysters and surf clams. A.R.C. was one of the first hatcheries to spawn shellfish and has a long and rich history in aquaculture out on Cape Cod. The hatchery has operated at the mouth of Chase Garden Creek for over 50 years, supporting more than 1500 farms with their seed! You can read more about the history of the Aquaculture Research Corporation here
In 2018 Cornell Cooperative Extension of Suffolk County (N.Y.) received their first PBR 1250Ls. Their state-of-the-art shellfish hatchery is now equipped with four of our PBR 1250Ls, which help support their restoration efforts. It’s been a pleasure to work with Hatchery Manager Josh Perry, who holds the record for some of the longest running cultures in any of our algae bioreactors. Their shellfish restoration work is focused on enhancing native shellfish populations to improve local water quality; this is certainly something everyone at Industrial Plankton is excited to be helping with. To learn more about the project visit Long Island Shellfish Restoration Project.
When Cherrystone Aqua-Farms was expanding their clam hatchery in Willis Wharf, Va., in 2017, they looked to Industrial Plankton to augment algae production, purchasing the first two PBR 1250Ls (Industrial Plankton’s first full-LED photobioreactors). With their spaceage look, Kari Rapine and staff named the pair of PBRs after Star Wars siblings Luke and Leia. They use the PBRs in their hatchery to support larval clam production.
It has been a pleasure working with and supporting Kari and the team at Cherrystone. Starting last year they began shipping directly to
customers, so you can order some excellent clams started on PBR algae at Cherrystone Aqua Farms.