Inside the World’s First Caviar Farm That Uses Fish Waste to Grow Vegetables
By Amy Quinton on May 24, 2018 in Food & Agriculture
WILTON, CALIF. – ON A FARM JUST OUTSIDE OF SACRAMENTO, hundreds of prehistoric-looking fish swim around in 50-foot diameter tanks. These are white sturgeon, the largest freshwater fish in North America. They’ve been around since dinosaurs, can grow more than 7 feet long and lay hundreds of thousands of eggs at a time. The roe of these sturgeon are harvested for a boutique food producer regally named Tsar Nicoulai Caviar.
While a Sacramento Valley farm may seem an unlikely location for such delicacies, the white sturgeon’s native habitat is just a few miles away in the Sacramento River. When wild beluga sturgeon populations in the Caspian Sea began to plummet in the 1980s from overfishing, University of California, Davis, aquaculture experts went to work to breed the species in captivity in the state.