A company called “Atarraya”, along with its founder and CEO Daniel Russek is on a mission to make the shrimp business sustainable and more efficient without destroying the environment. His solution is a “plug-and-play” shrimp farm that anyone can operate as it’s contained inside a standard cargo container, complete with an AI-powered automated system that remotely monitors water quality, regulates temperature and oxygenation, and feeds the shrimp. According to Russek, the “Shrimpbox” can practically be set up anywhere in the world and generate nearly 10X the return on investment to farmers.
Each Shrimpbox is equipped with an automated feeding system, a waste management system, two aeration systems, two tanks, and a control room to monitor the shrimps’ activities. The system includes what’s known as a “biofloc” waste removal system that utilizes beneficial microbes to keep the water clean. Atarraya claims the technology “reduces water exchange almost to zero,” and “eliminates the need to use antibiotics and other chemicals,” both of which enable them to start these kinds of farms anywhere in the world. What’s cool is that a Shrimpbox farm system enables farmers to become vertical aquaculture farming operations, meaning cargo containers can be located even in landlocked areas and moved accordingly to suit production needs.
The Shrimpbox is also semi-automated via software that monitors the tanks, which themselves are equipped with sensors to monitor temperature, as well as pH, oxygen, alkalinity, nitrogen dioxide, and ammonium levels. Users can also operate and adjust various functions remotely. Multiple containers and components, able to be adjusted and moved, can be combined to create a farm that is right-sized for anyone’s operation.
Russek says the Shrimpbox, which took about a decade to create, is now ready to begin rolling out at an industry-level scale. Atarraya just closed a $3.9 million Series A funding round to help those efforts, including the completion of the first prototypes which are being assembled in Mexico, where the company is currently headquartered. Atarraya’s nearby goal is to create a new farming industry in the United States and to create infrastructure and technology that is as easy to use as a laundry machine so that anybody can become a shrimp farmer. The company is also hoping to open an aquaculture farm in Indiana later this year where it will provide training and demonstrations. A short video demonstrating how the Shrimpbox works is HERE. Learn more about Atarraya HERE. (Sources: PopSci, TechCrunch)