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The first Benchmark Science & Innovation fair was held between May and June, bringing together the brightest minds within Benchmark to discuss the future of innovation, opportunities, and challenges on topics such as sea lice, disease, aquatic health, and welfare.

What is the Benchmark Science & Innovation fair?
It’s a one-of-a-kind event organized by the Innovation Board at Benchmark Group. Within Benchmark, different teams work transversally across our three Business Areas: Advanced Nutrition (INVE Aquaculture), Health, and Genetics.

The board comprises seven members with different field and expertise backgrounds.

These three Business Areas work independently from each other but have collaborative projects or teams across the Group. That is the case for the Innovation Board, which aims to develop opportunities for cross-business-unit and disruptive innovation and help coordinate our R&D and Intellectual Property processes throughout the company. The Board’s contributions to innovation and R&D content reflect Benchmark’s long-term strategic priorities: BMK strategy → Innovation strategy → Portfolio strategy.

Colleagues from all around the world tremendously attended the first Benchmark’s Science & Innovation fair. The fair was split into four parts, each dedicated to core topics for the Group.

  • 1st Session: Tackling sea lice and other aquaculture parasites
    • Chairs: Andy Shinn (Thailand) and Sarah Barker (UK)
  • 2nd Session: Management and control of viral and bacterial diseases
    • Chairs: Peter De Schryver (Belgium) and Harry Tziouvas (UK)
  • 3rd Session: Enhancing the health & welfare of aquatic animals in our care
    • Chairs: Marcela Salazar (Colombia) and Oscar Henning (USA)
  • 4th Session: Controlling reproduction and early life development
    • Chairs: Hideyoshi Segovia (USA) and Morten Rye (Norway)



INVE Aquaculture researchers also participated during the sessions, representing their innovation and R&D teams. Andy Shinn presented “An Overview of lessons learned in the battle against sea lice” (read Andy Shin’s latest publication), Bárbara Hostins talked about the “Challenges of Microbial Management in Shrimp Pond” (read Bárbara Hostins latest publication), and Marcos Santos, addressed the “Health challenges through the shrimp pipeline” together with Andy Shinn.

The fair ended with an internal call to action to submit an application for a focused workshop to develop a particular idea further, hopefully leading to a pilot project later this year.



Ross Houston comments about the Benchmark Science & Innovation fair;

“The fair’s thematic webinars were well-attended, with high-quality presentations and productive follow-on discussion of opportunities. We openly shared market and technology trends and ongoing research updates and identified some priority areas where collaboration across our business units can lead to new products and solutions. The top priority ideas will be taken forward through focused workshops and pilot projects to assess their potential further.

I believe these events highlighted both the depth of world-leading expertise in Benchmark and the major opportunities available through bringing together our genetics, animal health, and advanced nutrition expertise to develop new solutions to advance sustainability in aquaculture. I felt the buzz of excitement about the new connections and ideas, and I am now working together with our Innovation Board to help ensure we move forward with these.”

Peter De Schryver added,

“Since its beginning, INVE has been known for promoting innovation within the aquaculture industry. Our scientific background became part of our legacy, and we are proud to say we are committed to it from its core. We put 40 years of innovation at the disposal of our teams and customers. Thank you to all our colleagues who contributed to and joined our first Benchmark Science & Innovation Fair.

I am proud of the initiative and looking forward to supporting the selected ideas!”


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