Picture: Christoph Podes (COO), Stian Rognlid (CEO), Adriana Castellano Cardenas (Automation Manager)
Aquaticode’s Gender Sorting Solution has Achieved Breakthrough Results at Camanchaca.
Our innovative system, the SORTpro, is designed to categorize up to 10,000 juvenile salmon per hour based on gender and other performance traits. The AI-powered solution officially launches for production after having been assessed over time and at scale by Salmones Camanchaca, achieving a verified gender classification accuracy exceeding 97% – and no increase in mortality rates.
Manual ultrasound operators currently sort around 100 million fish annually in Chile. This approach has proven to promote faster growth in both male and female batches compared to mixed groups. By automating this procedure, we not only enhances flexibility, efficiency, and accuracy but also extends gender sorting capabilities to regions where high labour costs previously prohibited such practices.
“Camanchaca, who historically sorts around 15 million fish per year, have given us invaluable support in bringing our solution to the market. We appreciate their openness in sharing their facilities and expertise with us,” states Stian Rognlid, Aquaticode’s CEO.
Our R&D efforts at Camanchaca, dating back to 2021, originally began with the development of an early proof-of-concept alongside the manual sorting process. Over the years, Camanchaca’s contributions have led to highly accurate classifications not only in gender but also in early sexual maturation and deformities.
“Innovation is central to our strategy at Camanchaca,” explains Carlos Soto, Head of R&D. “Artificial intelligence is emerging as one of the most promising megatrends in food production. We are quick to support initiatives that can lead to more efficient and sustainable salmon farming.”
Addressing the importance of smolt quality in fish welfare and performance, Stian Rognlid expresses ambitions beyond solution’s current capabilities. “The SORTpro is a platform. In the near to medium term, we will introduce functionality to identify additional fish growth, health, and robustness traits. Each of these will bring significant value to farmers, but we truly believe that the sum is even greater than the parts.”
Founded in 2018 and backed by Nacre Capital, a venture builder focused on AI in the life sciences, Aquaticode raised a USD 6 million Series A in 2022. Their advisory board includes notable figures in aquaculture, such as former Cargill Aqua Nutrition CEO Einar Wathne.
“It was easy to get behind Aquaticode’s mission,” reflects Einar Wathne, now Chairman at the NCE Seafood Innovation Cluster. “Making decisions based on individual fish analysis and acting in real-time is the future of salmon farming. It’s about growing better fish as well as growing fish better.”