Monday, April 15, 2019
Asian-carp processing industry booms in Western Ky., which will get nation's first industrial park for that purpose
The Asian carp processing industry in far Western Kentucky is getting a significant boost from abroad: Chinese investors joined state and local officials at Wickliffe Friday to announce the first industrial park in the U.S. dedicated to processing the invasive fish, which is a popular food in China.
Two Rivers has bought, processed and sold 10 million pounds of carp in the past seven years since it opened, buying from about 30 commercial fishing groups in Kentucky and surrounding states, Zoeller reports. On Jan. 1 the state began a first-of-its-kind partnership with the fishery to pay anglers for Asian carp and sell their catches in online auctions in an effort to rid local waters of the voracious fish.
One of the investors, Lining He, said at the ceremony Friday that Asian carp processing is a $10 billion industry in China and accounts for more than 10 percent of global seafood consumption. "It probably could be a gold mine" in Kentucky, said He, who has a doctorate in ecological economics.
"This industrial park creates economic opportunity, and something we haven't seen - a zero waste fish facility, with a cluster of industry fish companies in one area," Commissioner Erran Persley of the Kentucky Cabinet for Economic Development said at the ceremony.