How does farmed caviar sound? Well, if you’re American, you’re going to keep wondering. But if you’re Canadian or a citizen of just about any other country, chances are you’ll taste shortnose sturgeon caviar from a farm in St. Andrews, New Brunswick, in the near future.

Sturgeon eggs or meat cannot be sold in the United States, because sturgeon have been listed as an endangered species. But Supreme Sturgeon and Caviar is planning to export both to Europe and Asia and to sell them across Canada.

“We’re here because shortnose sturgeon, the species we grow, exists only in the Saint John River,” says project biologist Bill Hogans. “Right now, we have roughly 30,000 fish in the pens, and it’s going well.” He adds that Supreme, which currently rents space at the Huntsman Marine Science Centre in St. Andrews, takes sturgeon from the Saint John River as broodstock, then returns them to the river to keep the population thriving.

Hogans also explained that the largest size eggs come from beluga sturgeon. “After that comes the next largest grade, slightly smaller. These are four or five species of which the shortnose is one.”

He adds that sturgeon have survived as a species for more than 80 million years, and the fish are highly disease resistant, making them ideal for fish farms. “We have had very few indications that they have any diseases that would limit their culture potential. Their viral disease susceptibility is very low. Their bacterial disease susceptibility seems even lower.”

Future plans call for the construction of a facility in nearby St. George.