From brass to bass: Prized Mediterranean fish raised in one-time Waterbury factory

WATERBURY — In a former Waterbury factory where buttons and artillery were once made, prized Mediterranean sea bass flown in from France now swim in massive tanks, raised as food for delivery to upscale restaurants and supermarkets.

It’s a new direction in economic development for Connecticut’s one-time brass manufacturing center and a big stake in aquaculture for Eric Pedersen, chief executive officer of Ideal Fish, which grows and sells branzino, a European bass popular with consumers. The former Wall Street banker began looking for a site five years ago and “everything came together in Waterbury,” he said, citing its superior water, plentiful factory space and proximity to Interstate 84.

“We need high-quality manufacturing space,” he said. “We need high-quality water, power, wastewater treatment, natural gas delivered to our facilities and we need an administration supportive of job creation.”

Mayor Neil O’Leary was eager to help when Pedersen pitched his business.

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Hartford Courant | Jan 02, 2019 at 6:00 AM

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