Air logistics make seafood fly

The Future of Norwegian Seafood Air Logistics conference. Photo: Air Cargo Week

The Future of Norwegian Seafood Air Logistics conference gathered visitors in person for the first time, as both the airfreight and aquaculture industries face a number of pressures.

Airlines, forwarders, Norwegian seafood exporters, importers and other service providers throughout the supply chain gathered in Oslo, Norway to explore how the airfreight sector can adapt to the challenges its facing and meet growing demand for its in the coming years.

The disruption caused by Covid, as well as ongoing supply chain disruptions were in the minds of delegates and the conference director Lars-Gunnar Comen as he welcomed attendees. “Over the past two years, airlines, airports and many others suffered,” with the seafood sector similarly impacted by the effects of the pandemic and economic challenges that caused, Comen highlighted. “These days, you never know what’s going to happen in the next month or next year.”

Read more: Africa and Qatar Airways Cargo feed the world

The conference didn’t just dwell on the challenges though, dedicating time to exploring the growing opportunities for companies within this sector, holding two sessions; ‘Looking East – Asian market trends’ and ‘Looking West – the Americas’. Both of these acknowledged the great potential for aquaculture companies to expand and air freight to play a greater role in the transportation of seafood around the globe.

As with many conferences in the past few months, there was a great sense of relief among delegates who were clearly enthusiastic about being back in an environment where they can hear from people across the sector and network with old friends and new colleagues. “It’s good to bring together all parties; forwarders, terminal companies, airports, fish producers,” Comen said.

Read more: A freighter full of salmon

“At ACL, we wish to contribute to opportunities for our industry to come together to discuss and exchange valuable insight,” Frode Stig, the president of Air Cargo Logistics, one of the conference’s sponsors, added. “It feels very good to meet face to face after a long period that has been challenging. Meeting in this arena facilitates a high level of good communication be- tween all parties.”

Only the second Future of Norwegian Seafood Air Logistics conference to take place – the first having been held virtually during the pandemic – Comen has his eye on the future, as did many of the delegates. “I’m seeing more and more forwarders who did not previously look at salmon now doing so,” Comen stated.

With infrastructure being a barrier to growth in the sector previously, Comen was keen to point to the increasing number of projects in the region to bolster capacity, such as Oslo Airport City (OAC). The project, under construction, was on display to delegates, with a talk from Jon Tallberg, the marketing director of OAC and a visit to the site to see the scale of the development.