A New Brunswick company that produces and sells caviar from sturgeon hopes to turn its local product into a global brand, thanks to a $500,000 venture capital investment.
Breviro Caviar Inc., of Pennfield, is the only company in the world to hold the necessary licence under the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species (CITES) to farm and sell roe from the shortnose sturgeon, CEO Jonathan Barry stated in a release.
As a result, sturgeon caviar is one of the world's rarest and most sought-after caviar varieties, fetching a retail price as high as $4,500 per kilogram, he said.
"This investment by NBIF (the New Brunswick Innovation Foundation) will help the company to refine and expand our sustainable, on-land solution for farming the fish and harvesting the roe," said Barry.
"Their investment, plus another $2 million in equity capital we raised, provides us with the funds we need to turn our company and this unique sturgeon, indigenous to the St. John River, into a global brand."
Earlier this year, Breviro won NBIF's R3 Innovation Challenge, landing $50,000 in research and development services at a post-secondary institution.
"After examining the innovation and growth potential of the company, we decided to invest," NBIF chair Bob Hatheway stated in a release.
The rare colour, taste and quality of the sturgeon caviar is increasing demand from luxury food distributors, luxury cruise, hotel and restaurant operators, he said.
NBIF is an independent, not-for-profit corporation that makes investments in innovation-based growth companies and applied research.