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The Western Isles are set to experience a 61% increase in harvest volumes this year. Image: Rob Fletcher.
The Western Isles are set to experience a 61% increase in harvest volumes this year. Image: Rob Fletcher.

Salmon production in the Western Isles is forecast to increase by an impressive 61% between 2015 and 2016.

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Marine Scotland Science's recently released Scottish Fish Farm Production Survey shows a breakdown of production levels across five different regions and Fish Farming Expert has noted some surprising large regional differences between production levels in 2015 and predicted harvest volumes in 2016.

The most striking is undoubtedly the Western Isles, where the tonnage is set to rise from 27,210 to 43,894 tonnes – no doubt as a result of harvests from number of new farms, such as Marine Harvest’s Muck site.

Orkney is forecast to have the second highest increase – from 11,074 to 12,450 tonnes, which equates to 12.4% – no doubt due in part to Scottish Sea Farms's new 1,800 tonne site at Wyre , as well as the favourable growing conditions reported in the area.

Meanwhile the area with the biggest downward trend is the Northwest Mainland, where production tonnage is forecast to fall from 54,741 to 43,342 tonnes – a drop of 26%.

The two remaining areas – Shetland and the Southwest Mainland – are forecast to remain roughly the same. A 3.6% dip, from 42,786 to 41,226 tonnes is expected in the former, while the latter is due to edge up from 35,911 to 36,987 tonnes, an increase of 2.2%.

 

Area 2015 production 2016 production estimated Percentage change
Shetland 42,786 41,229 -3.6
Orkney 11,074 12,450 12.4
Western Isles 27,210 43,894 61
North West Mainland 54,741 43,342 -26
South West Mainland 35,911 36,987 2.2

Overall the industry is expected to harvest 177,857 tonnes this year, up from 171,722 tonnes in 2015, an increase of 3.5%.

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