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Wester Ross salmon, which operates this farm near Ullapool, is one of the companies supporting the strategy. Image: Rob Fletcher.
Wester Ross salmon, which operates this farm near Ullapool, is one of the companies supporting the strategy. Image: Rob Fletcher.

Six Scottish aquaculture organisations have won grants totalling more than £2.4 million in the latest round of funding from the European Maritime and Fisheries Fund and the Scottish Government.

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Scottish government's fisheries secretary Fergus Ewing.
Scottish government's fisheries secretary Fergus Ewing.

Wester Ross Fisheries received £951,309 towards modernisation and sustainable growth in aquaculture; Shetland-based SSQC was awarded £696,420 for the provision of quantitative biotoxin testing services; Blueshell Mussels in Shetland is to receive £585,290 for expansion, increasing potential and improvement of support facilities at its aquaculture sites; Dawnfresh Seafoods in Lanarkshire will receive £136,760 towards the purchase and installation of an automatic trout feeding system; Perth-based Scottish Quality Salmon is set to benefit from  an award of £36,834 to assist in a Label Rouge Scottish salmon marketing campaign; and Creran Oysters in Argyll was awarded £9,040 towards the construction of a land-based shed for oyster farming.

SSQC’s chairman David Sandison told Fish Farming Expert: “SSQC Ltd are very pleased to be supported in the continued growth of services that directly underpin the seafood industries in Shetland. This support will allow us to further develop facilities and staff providing highly skilled jobs in the islands, and delivering essential quality and analytical testing services to a range of clients.”

In total, 41 aquaculture, sea fisheries and processing businesses will receive more than £8 million of EU and Scottish Government funding aimed at boosting growth, protecting jobs and developing sustainability. The European and Maritime Fisheries Fund contributes to the sustainable management of fisheries and marine ecosystems and helps businesses upgrade or modernise their equipment, and move into new markets.

Announcing the funding, the Scottish government’s fisheries secretary, Fergus Ewing, said: “This £8 million investment will encourage growth and protect jobs in the sea fisheries and aquaculture industry by allowing businesses to upgrade technology and buy new equipment.

“This is just one example of why EU funding is so important as it is helping the sea fisheries sector improve the quality of its products and enabling them to develop more environmentally friendly methods.

“We are committed to doing everything we can to overcome the damage Brexit will cause to jobs, trade, education and to our public services. In everything we do, we will continue to champion our shared interests and provide reassurances to fishing communities.”

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