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Eicosapentaenoic acid, EPA. (Image: SubDural12)

Nissui intends to boost EPA production

  (JAPAN, 5/5/2016)

Nippon Suisan Kaisha, also known as Nissui, plans to become the world's largest producer of eicosapentaenoic acid (EPA), a fatty acid found in the flesh of coldwater fish that is thought to boost brain function and cardiovascular health.

The Tokyo-based company has already started to control the biggest slice of the market for medical-use EPA, which can be used to treat hyperlipidemia, an elevated level of fat particles in the blood, Nikkei Asian Review reported.

Health experts have welcomed the initiative as EPA can prevent blood from easily clotting and it is used to prevent arteriosclerosis, the buildup of fats, cholesterol and other substances on the walls of arteries; heart attacks; and other conditions.

Nissui’s plans started being developed in December, when the firm’s board announced that it would spend JPY 8 billion (USD 71.2 million) to build an EPA production plant in the Kashima Industrial Zone, in Ibaraki Prefecture, northeast of Tokyo.

It was also announced that the new plant will begin operations in 2018, when Nissui plans on doubling its current EPA production of 400 tons a year.

Apart from aiming at an increase in production, the Group intends to focus on cost-cutting efforts as it expands into the US, China and other markets.

Company sources informed that they see a lot of potential in the US, where EPA-related products remain little known and the demand for EPA supplements and pharmaceuticals is expected to swell.

Meanwhile, Nissui’s fisheries business has been dwindling with fisheries operating profit drops of 50 per cent.

As it was informed in Nikkei Asian Review, in fiscal year 2015 its salmon and trout aquaculture business in Chile proved to be the worst due to international sanctions tightening the screws on Russia, a major consumer of the two fish, which led to the country to reduce expenses and caused the salmon and trout price fall.

To offset this profit loss, Nissui has turned to its Kurose Yellowtail, a brand of farmed fish that is unlikely to be hit by steep price declines.

Besides, Nissui has been developing its aquaculture technology at its Tokyo Innovation Center, in Hachioji, western Tokyo, where it has developed mixed feeds that can take the place of parrot bass and other species of young fish that are quite costly as fish fodder.

Further developments announced by Nissui include its plans to install an automatic feeding system that delivers just the right amount of fodder to sate the appetite of its farmed fish.

For his part, Shinya Yamashita, who heads the research center, said the company's aquaculture goal is to bring down the price of farmed fish to a level that households can afford.

Furthermore, Nissui is also moving into the deep-sea fishing industry, where China, South Korea, and other Asian countries have taken a big lead.


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Information of the company:
Address: Nippon Bldg., 2-6-2, Otemachi
City: Chiyoda-ku
State/ZIP: Tokyo (100-8686)
Country: Japan
Phone: +81 3 3244 7000
E-Mail: [email protected]
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