Expand the environmentally sound production of the ocean’s finest fish
KONA BLUE’S MISSION
Kona Blue Water Farms, Inc., began with a dream: To revolutionize the aquaculture industry by pioneering sustainable production of marine fish.
THE CULINARY STORY
Kona Kampachi® is prized by chefs and seafood lovers for its rich, delicious flavor and firm yet succulent texture.
ABOUT OUR FISH
Sustainably raised by Kona Blue Water Farms, Kona Kampachi® is a Hawaiian yellowtail that is open ocean grown in pristine clean ocean waters.
PRESS AND NEWS
Kona Kampachi® is getting a lot of attention these days. With concern about sustainability, nutrition, and food safety risin.
The story and history behind the Kona Blue brand
Kona Blue was founded in 2001 by Dr. Dale Sarver and Neil Anthony Sims, marine biologists and longtime Kona residents, who believed there was an opportunity for sustainably managed open ocean aquaculture of high-value, sushi-quality fish.
Kona Blue Investment
Kona Blue received an investment infusion in 2004 from Thomas McCloskey, President and CEO of Cornerstone Holdings.
Kona Kampachi® is open ocean grown, sustainable from hatch to harvest
At a time when many of the world’s fisheries are depleted by overfishing and many once-abundant species have become all but commercially extinct, Kona Blue has developed a sustainable, environmentally friendly alternative to meeting increasing consumer demand for fresh marine fish.
By combining a commitment to state-of-the-art marine hatchery science with a carefully selected, pristine deep ocean grow-out site, Kona Blue can raise Kona Kampachi® without depleting wild fish stocks or harming the ocean environment. No genetic engineering, hormones, or preventative antibiotics are used in the process.
At each stage of the process, the production of Kona Kampachi® is rigorously controlled—not only from the point of view of sustainability of wild ocean stocks, but also the quality of the feed, and the health and rate of growth of the fish. It’s a true hatch-to-harvest monitoring system.
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The Cycle of Sustainability
Kona Blue was founded in 2001 by two Hawaii-based marine biologists who understand the delicate balance of ocean ecosystems, and have refined the technology behind raising fish through sustainable aquaculture. Kona Kampachi® are:
Hatched from eggs using cutting-edge marine fish hatchery technology, which enables Kona Blue to produce Kona Kampachi® without depleting wild stocks of this fish.
Fed sustainable feed throughout the life cycle, comprising both live, site-raised zooplankton for newly-hatched fish; and fish and sustainable agricultural proteins produced from renewable sources.
Grown in open ocean pens half a mile off the Kona coast. This method of deep ocean fish farming provides Kona Kampachi® with a healthy, clean environment to grow where there is negligible environmental impact.
Harvested only to fulfill orders, to ensure freshness and quality.
This hatch-to-harvest approach separates Kona Blue from most other marine fish farms engaged in other yellowtail or tuna farming, which rely on the capture of wild fingerlings to stock their cages.
Marine Hatchery Technology
The process of farming Kona Kampachi® begins with broodstock from Kona Blue’s land-based hatchery. The fish spawn naturally, without stress or hormone inducement. Eggs are gently collected from broodstock tanks and are then placed into separate tanks where they hatch within 24 hours.
These extremely small, newly hatched fish need very specific types of live feed to grow. To overcome this challenge, Kona Blue cultures specific strains of microscopic algae to feed to selected zooplankton, which in turn becomes the feed for the newly-hatched Kona Kampachi®.
Deep Ocean Fish Farming
Within 6 to 10 weeks of hatching in Kona Blue’s land-based hatchery, the Kona Kampachi® are transferred to net pens half a mile off the Kona Coast. Depths range from 200-220 feet and currents are brisk. The fish are nurtured in these deep water fish cages for another 8 to 10 months, where they are regularly fed and the water is kept clean through the high natural exchange rates of brisk, open ocean currents.
At this point in the cycle, the fish are fed a sustainable feed comprising approximately 30% fish meal and fish oil from Peruvian anchovies (a sustainably managed fishery for the past 30 years) and trimmings from fish processed for human consumption, and 70% sustainable agricultural proteins and oils. As part of Kona Blue’s commitment to sustainability, the proportion of fish meal and fish oil in the feed has been reduced from around 80%, three years ago, to the current level of around 30%. Fish health is monitored continuously by offshore dive crews throughout this grow-out period.
Harvested Fresh as Needed, Year-Round
Kona Kampachi® are harvested at 4 lbs. to 6 lbs. in size, only to fulfill orders. The chilling process begins on our harvest boat as soon as the fish are taken out of the water. The fish are maintained at an optimal temperature as they are quickly whisked from dockside to packing plant to airport and on to our customers. They typically reach our customers within 48 hours of being harvested. That helps to ensure Kona Kampachi® are always delivered to restaurants, retailers, and distributors fresh.
Preserving Ocean Ecosystems
Kona Blue raises Kona Kampachi® in deep ocean water off the Kona coast. The seabed here is sandy, and strong currents move through the offshore site. This deep ocean aquaculture is environmentally friendly, ensuring the operation does not impact ocean water quality, and that it doesn’t damage delicate coral reefs or the surrounding marine ecosystem.
Prior to commencing operations, Kona Blue went through an exhaustive three-year permitting process to satisfy all relevant federal and state regulatory agencies, providing extensive opportunity for public comment. The company’s operations are monitored on an ongoing basis by the State Division of Aquatic Resources, the State Department of Health under a National Pollutant Discharge Elimination System, and the Hawaii Island Humpback Whale National Marine Sanctuary.
Kona Blue currently monitors the water quality at seven sampling locations around its cages, measuring everything from ammonia to turbidity to many other parameters (NO2, NO3, Sal, Temp, pH, DO, and total P). The company adheres precisely to the EPA guidelines for all sampling and analyses methods, contracting this out to an independent company. To date, the results of this monitoring show no measurable impact on water quality from Kona Blue’s open ocean cages.
Kona Blue’s premiere achievement is Kona Kampachi®, a premium sushi-grade Hawaiian yellowtail species. Kona Kampachi® is proudly served at sushi bars and white-tablecloth restaurants in the Hawaiian Islands and on the U.S. Mainland, and is also available at select fresh fish markets.
Kona Blue is committed not only to excellence in fish culturing and to producing a high-quality product, but also to environmental stewardship. Sustainability and minimum ecological impact have always been priorities for the company.
Kona Blue’s dedicated staff includes many experts in their respective fields—people from many different origins and walks of life. Despite this diversity, all Kona Blue employees share an abiding belief in the company’s mission of environmental integrity and consumer health.
Combining cutting-edge aquaculture technology with an experienced and dedicated team will continue to define Kona Blue as it moves into the global seafood marketplace of the future.
Kona Kampachi® is a delicious, sushi-grade Hawaiian yellowtail, sustainably raised in the pristine open ocean off the coast of Hawaii.
In the wild, Seriola rivoliana would be known as Almaco Jack or kahala, but Kona Kampachi® is substantially different from its wild counterpart. Kona Blue nurtures its Kona Kampachi® through its entire life cycle from hatch to harvest, yielding one of the healthiest and most delicious fish on the market today.
Broad Culinary Appeal
Kona Kampachi® has a clean, rich but crisp taste that has no equal among raw fish. Its high-fat content (30%) creates a fish that is prized for its rich flavor and firm texture, and versatile enough for both raw and cooked applications. The succulent yet subtle flavor of Kona Kampachi® lends itself perfectly to sautéing, grilling, searing and roasting, as well as to sushi, sashimi and ceviche.
Healthy and Wholesome
Kona Kampachi® is also rich in healthy Omega-3 fish oils. And because Kona Kampachi® is fed high quality feed ingredients and nurtured from hatch to harvest in some of the cleanest water on Earth, it has no detectable levels of mercury or PCBs, and is completely free of internal parasites.
Kona Blue is now the first integrated hatchery and offshore fish farm in the country, an advantage the company will strengthen.
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