MORE THAN A DECADE AGO, Mote — an independent nonprofit organization dedicated to marine research and conservation — began exploring ways to remove fishing pressures from wild sturgeon stocks by developing innovative aquaculture techniques to produce a superior product in an environmentally responsible fashion. Today, Mote produces high-quality caviar served in fine restaurants and sold through the most distinguished purveyors. Mote operates the nation’s largest recirculating research facility for marine and freshwater aquaculture in the United States. Located in Sarasota, Fla., this technology test-bed is a state-of-the-art farm focused on developing new fish production techniques 17 miles from any saltwater coastline or large body of fresh water.
Mote caviar and sturgeon filets are produced on a modern farm that focuses on developing and perfecting our ability to re-use water to grow fish for food in order to minimize our environmental footprint. We also follow strict food safety guidelines. Mote is demonstrating that unlimited water access is not needed — nor environmentally sustainable or desirable — for large-scale production of food and to grow marine fish species to replenish depleted wild stocks.
- Controlled Environment: Mote sturgeon (Acipenser baerii) are grown indoors where all parameters — from diet to water quality — are strictly controlled, allowing us to produce caviar with a consistent flavor and quality.
- Food Safety: Mote caviar and sturgeon meat are produced in accordance with all Country-of-Origin Labeling standards and are classified as U.S.-produced, meaning that our caviar is hatched, raised, harvested and processed in the U.S. Our growth and production techniques follow strict state and federal regulations.
- Water Re-Use: Some aquaculture facilities may use “new” water as quickly as every 5 to 7 minutes. Technology in place at Mote allows us to clean and re-use water for 5 to 7 days, protecting a precious natural resource.