Tri Marine Completes First Phase of New Plant in American Samoa

For Immediate Release on 16 April, 2013

Tri Marine Group celebrated the completion of its new cold storage facility on Friday, April 12 with a ribbon cutting to mark the first stage of its ambitious tuna cannery project.

The ceremony took place at the Samoa Tuna Processors’ wharf in Atu’u village, American Samoa.  Now operational, this new facility can receive, classify, and store more than 5,000 MT of frozen tuna.  Its innovative design and technologically advanced refrigeration machinery and insulation systems make this cold storage the most energy efficient and economical in the region.

“We are very happy to see this latest addition to our operations in the South Pacific,” explained Tri Marine’s chairman, Renato Curto. “This is just the first step of our ambitious American Samoa project. Our dream will be realized when our brand new cannery is completed which will allow us to locally process tuna that is responsibly caught in the South Pacific by fishing boats based in American Samoa.”

The inauguration of the new cold storage was attended by Governor Moliga, Congressman Faleomavaega, former Governor Tulafono as well as leaders of the legislature of American Samoa, ASG Cabinet member including Director of Commerce Kenisell Lafaele, and other local dignitaries. In addition, representatives of the local business community and prominent fishing boat owners were on-hand to tour the new facility.

Together, Governor Moliga and Congressmen Faleomavaega, cut the ribbon to open the cold storage facility.  As they addressed the crowd, both acknowledged former Governor Tulafono’s vision and leadership for his instrumental role in growing Tri Marine’s investment in American Samoa. 

“This investment is evidence of Tri Marine’s commitment to American Samoa and confirms the fact that there will once more be two large-scale tuna processing plants in the Territory,” added Joe Hamby, Tri Marine Group Managing Director.

The cold storage facility allows Samoa Tuna Processors (STP) to off-load fish directly into a 36,000 square foot climate-controlled receiving room where it will be automatically sized, placed into fish bins, weighed, and transferred into the cold storage until it is needed for processing.  The design of the facility is unlike any other in the world.  Its scale, system of handling the tuna and energy-saving design makes it the most modern, economical and largest cold storage in the South Pacific.  Its efficiency and capacity will help STP to quickly unload fishing boats while supporting the tuna processing operations of STP and protecting the quality of the fish by limiting its exposure to the tropical climate of the territory.

Phase two of the development project includes a new processing and packing facility for high quality fresh and frozen tuna, and is scheduled for completion and commencement of operations later this year. 

The cannery will be the third and final phase of the project and is due for completion 18 months after Tri Marine receives permit approval from the Army Corp of Engineers to repair and extend the seawall that is protecting the STP property. 

When complete, Tri Marine estimates the operation will create more than 1,200 direct and 650 indirect jobs, contributing significantly to the local economy and further solidifying American Samoa as the main tuna hub in the Eastern South Pacific. 

For more information about Tri Marine, visit www.trimarinegroup.com

 

Background on Tri Marine & STP

Samoa Tuna Processors (STP) is a wholly owned subsidiary of the Tri Marine Group of Companies.  Tri Marine’s business includes fishing, procurement, processing, and trading of tuna and other seafood products. A privately held company headquartered in Bellevue, Washington, Tri Marine has offices in 14 countries with 12 processing plants strategically located around the globe.   The company’s fleet of 21 fishing vessels operates primarily in the Western Pacific, ten based in American Samoa.  Since its founding in 1971 in Singapore, Tri Marine has grown to be one of the largest tuna supply companies in the world serving well-known CPG brands as well as processing plants and fishing companies.