See the current and most recent work we've been involved with to develop the seafood industry

A sustainable future for Ireland's coastal and island communities

BIM is applying for two licences to farm Atlantic salmon off the west coast of Ireland. We aim to facilitate the development of two deep sea organic salmon farms that can accommodate safe, efficient, and sustainable fish farming to meet market demand and create sustainable jobs in an area where they are much needed.

Todhchaí inbhuanaithe do phobail oileán agus chósta na hÉireann...

Growing market for affordable, high-quality organic salmon

Ireland has a strong reputation for its organic farmed salmon, partly because of the rigorous standards imposed on Irish salmon farms. The demand for Irish salmon is growing, and the value of the export market has increased 18% since 2008. Food and Agriculture Organisation of the United Nations (FAO) estimates that, globally, an extra 42 million tonnes of farmed seafood will be required annually by the year 2030. Sustainable fish farming is one way to meet this global food need.

We want to ensure that Ireland’s role in the expansion of commercial aquaculture is done responsibly, and that the companies who hold the contracts to operate our fish farms are held accountable to the Irish public.

How are the Deep Sea Projects different?

Instead of a fish farming licence being given directly to a private company, we are applying for the salmon farm licences which, if issued, we will franchise to a commercial operator. The company will then be required to adhere to the already rigorous EU and Irish conditions, as well as additional layers of strict requirements that we’ve set.

This will ensure that the fish farms meet organic standards and demonstrate a real commitment to sustainable production. The first of these two projects is in Galway Bay. The proposed site is 1.7km from the nearest land mass, much further out to sea than conventional fish farms.

Its distance from shore, the wave action at the site, and the amount of space alloted to each enclosure, combined with our strict regulations, minimise all of the issues that can be cause for concern. Read more about the proposed organic salmon farm in Galway Bay and the proposed organic salmon farm in Inishturk

A salmon leapingThe licensing process

As part of the process of carrying out the required Environmental Impact Assessment (EIA), we consult both formally and informally with a wide range of stakeholders and interested parties. The EIA also involves carrying out scientific investigations to ensure that there are no overriding environmental constraints.

The Environmental Impact Statement (EIS) is a large part of what determines whether a licence is granted. This means that before we even impose our standards on any commercial operation, there has been extensive research to ensure that the proposed fish farms would meet standards set out by EU directives and state regulations.

Fish farming and sustainability

We also understand that there is a range of conflicting information available about fish farms, and that some of the issues it raises require clarification and dialogue. Not all fish farming is the same, and we invite open communication about the future of sustainable organic fish farming in Irish waters.

BIM is committed to meeting the highest environmental standards, using the most advanced technology to protect our environment and improve efficiency, and we will impose exacting regulations that will protect our waters as well as support our coastal and island communities.

If you have questions that are not answered by the information or links to resources we’ve supplied here, please contact us at

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