The fishery VARITA, with the support of the Rural Support Service and the financing provided by BlueOrange, has invested EUR 3.6 million in the development of the company. Of this amount, EUR 1.1 million is used for modernisation, including the purchase of new refrigeration equipment, while the remaining amount will be invested in the development of the company and the increase in catch volumes.
VARITA is engaged in fishing, primary production and refrigeration of fish, sales of finished produce and international freight transport. Approximately third of the financing provided by BlueOrange, or EUR 1.1 million, has been used for the reconstruction of the production building in the Skulte port area, and equipping the building with powerful refrigeration equipment. The new refrigeration complex is scheduled to be put into service in early August.
“The new refrigeration plant will allow for fast freezing of freshly caught fish at the temperature of minus 40 degrees. This is a significant investment in the development of the company, since it is the speed of fish freezing that determines the quality of production. The faster the freezing, the higher quality produce we can offer to customers for the production of fish products,” explains the head of the company, Agris Lapins.
At present, with the purchase of new refrigeration equipment, the total refrigeration capacity of the complex in the Skulte port area will reach up to 60 tonnes per day. This capacity allows for storing of up to 2000 tonnes of frozen produce per year.
SIA “VARITA” currently provides for 60 jobs, and the company plans to increase the number of employees to 70 in both the existing and new fish refrigeration complex and storage sites in the coming year. “Funding aimed at business development is one of the priorities of BlueOrange crediting policy. We are also pleased with the company's plans to increase the number of jobs, which is an important factor for economic development in the regions of Latvia,” notes Dmitrijs Latisevs, Chairman of the Board at BlueOrange.
Currently, VARITA owns six fishing vessels, and the company is engaged in fishing for herring, sprat and cod in the Baltic Sea. The fish is delivered to the company’s complex at the port of Skulte where the primary production, cooling, sorting, refrigeration and storage takes place. The production is then shipped for further processing. “Proper technological process for freezing, storing and transporting fish is a prerequisite for high-quality production of fish preserves, smoked fish and brine. By providing a complete cycle of fishing, primary production, sorting, refrigeration and supply of fish, we can guarantee the highest quality of raw materials to our customers,” says Agris Lapins.
The company supplies frozen fish products to local food production companies and exports it to the European Union and other countries. The largest markets for the production of VARITA are Estonia, Lithuania, Denmark, and Ukraine.
SIA VARITA was founded in 1995 and its owners are Agris Lapins (60%) and Ilmars Lielmanis (40%). The company is an active member of the Vidzeme fishery association, the Latvia fisheries association and the National Fisheries Producer’s Organisation. The company's turnover reached EUR 1.655 million last year.