Have you ever eaten shrimp? Nearly 90% of the shrimp eaten in the U.S. comes from other countries. Minnesotans have always eaten shrimp that was flown here from the ocean. But now there is a farm in Belaton, Minnesota, in Lyon County, that safely raises shrimp. It is called trū Shrimp.
Farming things like shrimp or other aquatic life is called aquaculture. Aquaculture was developed as the seafood industry needed to find new ways to farm seafood. Wild seafood has been overfished in many places. The ocean is polluted in places, which makes it hard for seafood to grow on their own.
trū Shrimp raises shrimp indoors. That means the farmers do not have to worry about weather conditions. Disease is less of a problem as well. When shrimp are raised indoors, their climate and surroundings are closely monitored and controlled. This allows shrimp to be grown in the safest environment possible.
This form of aquaculture reduces the carbon footprint usually involved in importing shrimp from far away. The farm also uses a special kind of shrimp tanks that allows them to recycle and reuse the water that the shrimp live in. This way the shrimp have access to fresh and clean water, while water is not wasted.
Shrimp start out in eggs. Once they are hatched and ready to grow, they are about the size of an eyelash. Once they are bigger, they can be harvested. The smallest shrimp are sold as “salad shrimp” at the grocery store. One pound of salad shrimp has about 60 shrimp. The largest shrimp are often called “jumbo shrimp” at the grocery store. One pound of jumbo shrimp has about 16 shrimp. The shrimp are then removed from large water tanks called tidal basins and placed directly on ice. They are kept on the ice until they are brought to a trū Shrimp processing facility. There they are counted, weighed, and sorted. Then the shrimp are packaged and loaded onto trucks for delivery to the grocery store or restaurant.