Zoetis announced July 1 the acquisition of Fish Vet Group from Benchmark Holdings PLC as a strategic addition to its Pharmaq business, which develops and commercializes fish vaccines and offers services in vaccination and diagnostics for aquaculture.
Adding Fish Vet Group grows the geographic reach and enhances the diagnostics expertise and testing services, including environmental testing, that Pharmaq’s reference lab Pharmaq Analytiq now can offer fish farmers in major aquaculture markets, Zoetis said in its announcement.
Fish Vet Group is headquartered in Inverness, Scotland, with diagnostic lab locations there as well as in Norway, Ireland and Chile, where it provides veterinary services and bacteriology, histology and polymerase-chain reaction (PCR) testing services. To help fish producers comply with strict environmental standards, Fish Vet Group offers surveys and analysis to monitor potential environmental impacts and inform responsible fish disease treatments as part of a sustainable aquaculture system, the announcement said.
Tests and accompanying analyses from Fish Vet Group help producers to check the effect of existing fish farms and inform the potential for new site locations, determine and monitor seabed conditions and provide input to required regulatory submissions. Comprehensive lab analysis includes marine and freshwater benthic taxonomy, sediment chemistry and water quality analysis.
“Raising healthy fish to meet the demands of our growing global population while respecting the environment is critical for a healthier, more sustainable future,” said Rob Kelly, executive vice president and president of international operations for Zoetis. “Innovative fish health management tools, across the continuum of care and including vaccines and diagnostic testing, will help us better meet the needs of our customers. We are excited to welcome Fish Vet Group to our aquaculture team at Pharmaq and together offer fish producers the most comprehensive suite of fish health solutions.”
“We are excited to join the team at Pharmaq to accelerate our offering in fish health, environment and diagnostics services,” Fish Vet Group global manager Jan Petter Berg said. “We look forward to continuing to serve our customers and supporting good fish health in aquaculture systems worldwide.”
Farmed fish is one of the fastest-growing sources of animal-based protein, Zoetis noted. With declining availability of wild fish and an increasing global human population, innovative fish health management tools are important to further develop a safe, sustainable supply of nutritious seafood.
As a global leader in fish health and vaccines, Pharmaq, acquired by Zoetis in 2015, is dedicated to supporting sustainable growth in the global aquaculture industry, the announcement said. Beyond fish vaccines and therapeutics, Pharmaq also offers PHARMAQ Fishteq vaccination machines and services and PHARMAQ Analytiq reference lab and diagnostic services that Fish Vet Group now will be a part of. Pharmaq’s research and production facilities are based in Norway, with global operations in commercial fish farming markets.
Zoetis is a leading animal health company dedicated to supporting its customers and their businesses. Building on more than 65 years of experience in animal health, Zoetis discovers, develops, manufactures and commercializes medicines, vaccines and diagnostic products, which are complemented by biodevices, genetic tests and precision livestock farming. In 2019, the company generated annual revenue of $6.3 billion and had approximately 10,600 employees.
Fish Vet Group is part of Benchmark’s animal health division and represents the world’s largest provider of dedicated, evidence-based veterinary services, diagnostic technologies and environmental monitoring to the aquaculture sector.