Seafreeze, Ltd. is a producer of sea-frozen fish on the U.S. East Coast based at the Port of Davisville in the Quonset Business Park. The company supplies sea-frozen and land-frozen fish to a worldwide range of markets. Its HACCP-certified trawlers target underutilized species, such as Illex Squid, Loligo Squid, Atlantic Mackerel, Atlantic Butterfish and Atlantic Herring.
The company has long relied on sales to overseas markets through exports. Seafreeze, Ltd.’s main markets for exports include TPP countries Canada and Japan, as well as China, the Philippines, Italy, Spain, Iceland, the Faroe Islands, and South Africa. Sixty percent of the company’s sales are from exports.
This Rhode Island supplier has participated in Food Export activities since 2011 utilizing the Branded Program, the Online Product Catalog, Food Show PLUS!™ services and attending Buyers Missions. Established in 1984 by fishermen Richard Goodwin and Geir Monsen, Seafreeze, Ltd. has evolved to become the largest producer and trader of sea-frozen fish on the U.S. East Coast. Over 30 years of integrity and commitment enables them to build global partnerships with industry leaders.
In 2014, Rhode Island food and seafood companies made great progress growing their export sales with Rhode Island Commerce Corporation and Food Export-Northeast’s assistance. That year, 31 companies participated in Food Export’s programs including Buyers Missions, Focused Trade Missions, Food Show PLUS!™, webinars seminars, the Online Product Catalog and the Branded Program — a cost share assistance program for international market promotion. These efforts accumulated to over $3.7 million in actual sales, over $4 million in projected sales and 10 new distributorships. Seafood, especially squid, mackerel, and scallops, as well as specialty meats and cheeses, are just a few of the products that have experienced growth in international sales.
Working closely with Commerce Corporation has helped Food Export reach suppliers and assist them to achieve new export sales.
The Commerce Corporation’s Director, International Trade Programs,Katherine Therieau states, “The Commerce Corporation is so pleased to be partnered with Food Export USA. As a state with a heavy dependence on the seafood/aquaculture industry, Food Export provides critically important programs for this sector. Through our partnership with Food Export USA, our seafood processors have been able to access markets that they would not have been able to tap into on their own. The Food Export staff walks them through every step of the way; everything from researching what markets are best for the companies, introducing them to foreign buyers, assisting with import regulations and documentation, cultural nuances, and closing the deal. Food Export is a tremendous asset to our state.”
Companies also reported adding 25 jobs during the last three years as well, illustrating that exports can drive overall growth in the region. In addition to job growth, more Rhode Island products now have greater exposure in new markets and export sales continue to grow. Food Export-Northeast’s programs help small and medium-sized Rhode Island companies expand overseas.