Restaurateurs from Cheltenham to launch ‘seafood’ farming business

Two entrepreneurial restaurateurs from Cheltenham have unveiled plans to for an exciting new start-up – a land-based seafood farming business hoping to tap into a market worth £500 million-plus.

If your special fried rice or prawn cocktail seems just that little bits tastier from next year, and has a lower carbon footprint, it could be because of two Gloucestershire entrepreneurs.

Restaurateurs Litu Mohiuddin and Rasel Mahmud, who ran Cheltenham’s East India Café and now own the town’s Memsahib Gin and Tea Bar, are the pair behind start-up business Land Ocean Farm.

After working with Cirencester-headquartered Farm 491, which acts as a catalyst to help encourage technological progress in agriculture, Mohiuddin and Mahmud are now confident their first shrimp farm will launch in 2022 – at a location yet to be revealed.

Mahmud, who has a degree in international business and has worked for Marks & Spencer as a commercial food manager, said: ‘Land Ocean Farm aims to produce consistent supplies of fresh, quality shrimp, that addresses traceability as well as environmental issues in current supply chains.’

The firm predicts its model will be suitable for existing farmers to introduce into their businesses, opening up a potentially lucrative market for everyone.

A business farming warm-water king prawns was launched in Lincolnshire in 2017.

According to Seafish, the UK public body supporting the seafood industry, the UK imports an estimated 80,000 prawns and shrimps annually with retail sales worth £500 million-plus.

Mohiuddin and Mahmud credit their county-based mentor, Rod Horrocks, Dr Malcolm Dickson, a fisheries and aquaculture expert, and Sarah Carr, from Farm491 with making Land Ocean Farm possible.

By Andrew Merrell

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© SoGlos
Wednesday 08 December 2021

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