Norwegian entrepreneur Geir Olsen will supply bars, restaurants and cruise boats all over the world with exclusive ice cubes from Norway’s second largest glacier.
The company Svaice AS will extract ice cubes from Norway’s second largest glacier, but has been met with criticism from both environmental and tourism organizations, and politicians locally and nationally, according to NRK.
The ice cube comes from a sample of 50 tonnes of ice from Svartisen. Currently, the ice is located on a cold store in one of the buildings of the former solar cell company REC in Glomfjord, which went bankrupt in 2012.
Geir Olsen and his company Svaice AS bought the building cheaply, and have so far invested NOK 12 million in ice cube production.
Svaice applied to collect up to 3600 m³ of ice from Svartisen and transport it by helicopter. The application met violent protests both locally and nationally.
After the protest, the company has decided not to pick up ice during the tourist season in the summer. They will start in September and finish the production in April.
Geir Olsen rejects that ice cube production will affect the approximately 370 square kilometer glacier that extends through the municipalities of Rana, Meløy and Rødøy,
The tourism offices in Meløy fears the ice cube project will destroy the image of the region and fewer tourists will come.
They fear that the noise from helicopters, machines and vehicles will scare away the tourists.
When the idea was proposed in 2015, both Meløy municipality and the county municipality were positive . But then the mood has changed. Last year, both the County Governor of Nordland and Nordland County Council said that they did not want the continuation of the activities of the company.
However, in February this year, the County Governor withdrew his objection.
Geir Olsen is not willing to give up despite the criticism. He has worked for four years to realize the plans to sell exclusive ice cubes for drinks to be served in Monaco and Dubai.