Breeding Sturgeons in Calvisano

Our method: Craftsmanship, Meticulousness and constant monitoring.
This process combines the wisdom of our artisans with scientific and technological expertise, respecting the welfare of Sturgeons and environmental sustainability, in order to ensure unparalleled caviar quality.

Research and Innovation

Royal Food and its high-quality products are the results of 30 years of experience by professionals who, with dedication and passion, have perfected the production of sturgeon in captivity, being among the first in the world.
Our sturgeons are bred in a farm called Acipenser srl, a leading facility in Calvisano – Italy, an important national production hub located in the province of Brescia that contributes to making Italy a leader in the production of caviar (over 60 tons) worldwide.
The farm is directed by  Carlo Dalla Rosa, one of the greatest experts in sturgeon culture in Italy and overseas. The facility extends over an area of more than 10 hectares, for a total stretch of more than one kilometer and contains more than 80 tanks of different sizes.

Sostenibilità Ambientale

Respect for sturgeon welfare and environmental sustainability are two of the company’s founding values and are reflected in certain specific technical choices, which are made in compliance with precise standards and certifications, including the important international brand “Friend of The Sea” of which we can boast. We plan, in the near future, to include a 350kW photovoltaic system that will supply our energy needs while respecting the environment.

Inside the farm, sturgeons swim in tanks fed by abundant spring water and oxygenated water that enters the plant without the use of energy sources (internal and external). The water is constantly monitored and changed several times a day, to ensure a complete absence of an unpleasant aftertaste in the delicious caviar. The well-being of the sturgeon determines the quality of the caviar.

The low density of breeding, the monitoring of the precise stage of maturity of the eggs, the use of GMO-free feed of the highest quality and rich in fishmeal, along with the rigorous hygiene and health checks, make the farm a true flagship in Italy.

Moreover, the whole system is a complete cycle: this allows traceability and easy identification of the production lot, and guarantees that the quantities extracted are homogeneous and belong to a specific female.

The hatchery
the first beating heart of the company

In recent years, considerable energy and resources have been dedicated to the delicate growth phase of sturgeons. Everything begins in the hatchery. Here, in the first area, where all environmental and other variables are kept strictly monitored 24 hours a day, the fertilization of eggs takes place, followed by the hatching of small larvae with a yolk sac that feeds them during the first days. Subsequently, we intervene with the administration of a tiny live crustacean (Artemia Salina) and then move on to feed the fry (baby sturgeons) with a fine flour containing all the necessary nutrients.

Sturgeon growth

After being in this sector for about 2 months, the sturgeons are manually transferred to the second sector where they will stay for about 4 months in 75 tanks with a surface of 7 square meters each, fed with water from the well and equipped with automatic feeders. In this phase, particular attention is given to the well-being of the fish, to the density, to the feeding which must not be forced but must give vigor to the sturgeon that will be our “traveling companion” for 10/25 years. When they reach the size of about 80/100 gr, after about 6 months from birth, the sturgeons are manually transferred to the large external breeding tanks.

Our farming strengths:

  • Complete supply chain control.
  • Remarkable water renewal in the plant which is equal to 2,000 liters/second in an open cycle.
  • The use of pure species and crossbreeds enables us to enhance the intrinsic characteristics of the single parental species.
  • Ability to extract immature roe from sturgeons at the optimal time, to produce caviar.
  • No contamination, allowing the use of a quantity of salt of around 3% of the weight of the product (Malossol technique), a quantity which is lower than that of historical wild caviar.
  • Sustainable practices with regard to fish welfare, consumer health, respect for the environment and safeguarding the species.

Sturgeon, an endangered fish

Sturgeons are one of the largest and most majestic prehistoric fish found in Europe and the rest of the world, populating seas and freshwater streams.

These extremely ancient and vulnerable fish reproduce more slowly than others: it can take from 7 to 20 years for them to mature sexually; some females reproduce once every two or three years, depending on their physiological state and environmental conditions.
The scarcity of space for reproduction due to the construction of dams and other projects is preventing the rise of sturgeons from the sea to the rivers.
Moreover, the pollution of open waters has reduced not only the number of species present but also the diversity of native species.

Carlo Dalla Rosa is a contributing member of W.S.C.S. (World Sturgeon Conservation Society) an international association of scientists dedicated to supporting the conservation, preservation, and reintroduction of sturgeon into the wild worldwide.

The joint action of CITES (an international organization that protects endangered wild species, illegal trade and poaching) and aquaculture, with reference to the preservation of stock and genetic variables of the various species, is the only way to safeguard this living fossil, which is in danger of extinction. Acipenser operates with the utmost respect toward these CITES regulations in order to fully safeguard the species and produce eco-friendly caviar.

Ask us

Do you have any questions or are you looking for tips or specific information regarding our types of caviar?
Please do not hesitate to contact us!

For further information
Tel: (+39) 335 83 02480