02 June 2021

Northampton, UK (02 June 2021) Cadman Capital Group, a privately-owned, independent private equity firm has announced the appointment of two new aquaculture hires as it continues to drive growth of its aquaculture portfolio, which is comprised of three businesses – Orkney Shellfish Hatchery, Ocean On Land Technology® and BVI-based Caribbean Sustainable Fisheries.

Newly-appointed Forrest Petersen joins the Orkney Shellfish Hatchery team as Oyster Hatchery Consultant, whilst Cristian Cox joins Ocean On Land Technology in the specialist role of Recirculation Aquaculture Systems Designer & Engineer.

Forrest’s appointment comes after Orkney Shellfish Hatchery, a facility producing premium, bio-secure and disease-free shellfish products, experienced significant success in growing European flat oyster spat on land in 2020. Alongside its successes in oyster cultivation, the hatchery also reported an increase in clawed lobster survival rates last year following a series of trials with sister company, Ocean On Land Technology. Since the trials began in October 2020, the hatchery has reported continued uptrends in larval survival rates, which now consistently stand at upwards of 30%, a number significantly higher than the estimated 0.005% survival rate of European clawed lobster in the wild.

Specialist Appointments

Forrest Petersen

A shellfish hatchery specialist with more than 14 years of experience in the operation and management of shellfish farms and hatcheries, Forrest has spent most of his career working within oyster hatchery facilities across the globe. While finishing his studies, Forrest gained experience managing the Marshall Islands Mariculture Farm, which is a subsidiary of US aquaculture-giant Ocean Reefs and Aquariums. Following relocation to Hawaii, Forrest went on to spend six years managing the University of Hawaii’s bivalve oyster hatchery in Hilo, which forms part of the Pacific Aquaculture and Coastal Resources Centre. In addition, he has built experience working across a number of private projects, most recently at Hawaiian Shellfish, where he specialised in producing premium oyster larvae and seed.

Through this extensive experience, Forrest has developed a thorough understanding of oysters at a global scale, with significant knowledge of the latest hatchery technologies and processes.

In his role as Oyster Hatchery Consultant, he will be responsible for scaling up the bio-secure production facility at Orkney Shellfish Hatchery, as it looks to move to commercial production of European native oyster spat.

Commenting on the appointment, Nik Sachlikidis, Managing Director of the Cadman Capital Group’s Aquaculture Portfolio said: “With ambitious plans to scale up oyster production at Orkney Shellfish Hatchery, we are excited to see Forrest utilise his extensive experience to improve efficiencies and build on the outstanding work already completed by our dedicated team. As always, alongside production, we remain focused on ensuring the quality standards of our produce remains extremely high, setting our oysters apart and making them ideal for restoration efforts.”

Cristian Cox

An aquaculture engineer with more than 24 years of international experience in the biotechnology, bioprocess automation, biomedical instrumentation and industrial process automation fields, Cristian has been involved in a number of aquaculture projects, both big and small, over the course of his career. Gaining knowledge and insight into aquaculture operations across a variety of countries including Norway, USA, Canada, Chile, The Netherlands, Malta and the United Arab Emirates, has allowed him to gain a well-rounded knowledge of the world’s very best aquaculture systems.

As Recirculation Aquaculture Systems Designer & Engineer, Cristian will focus on enhancing and optimising Ocean On Land Technology’s existing product range, including its flagship Aquahive® product, as well as the creation of new products as the business continues to research and develop innovative aquaculture solutions, offering both new and existing clients a wider product range. 

Commenting on Cristian’s appointment, Nik Sachlikidis added: “The appointment of Cristian as Recirculation Aquaculture Systems Designer & Engineer allows Ocean On Land Technology to continue to refine and develop the existing technology, and to continue to innovate in this exciting and evolving space. We are thrilled to have Cristian on-board and are looking forward to him applying his vast Recirculating Aquaculture System experience to the next generation of our Ocean On Land Technology products.”

Through its ongoing partnership, Ocean On Land Technology and Orkney Shellfish Hatchery are committed to researching, developing and trialling new technologies to improve efficiency and sustainability when cultivating shellfish on land, in order to aid the replenishment of worldwide seafood stocks.