Gerard Freil, right, presents the 2017 Export Award to SSC sales director Su Cox, as event host Jay Rayner looks on. Photo: Callum Mackay.

Two salmon farmers in food excellence finals

Salmon farmers Wester Ross Fisheries and the Scottish Salmon Company have each made the finals of the Highlands and Islands Food and Drink Awards, each in two different categories.

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Craig Anderson: "Recognition of our commitment".

Wester Ross is a finalist in the Best Marketing Campaign Award category and is also a contender for the Healthier Food and Drink Award.

The Scottish Salmon Company (SSC) is one of six companies vying for the Export Award. The other finalists include Inverawe Smokehouses and Loch Fyne Oysters, along with two breweries and a distillery.

SSC is also among three companies shortlisted for the Sustainability Award, along with Loch Fyne Oysters and Dingwall’s GlenWyvis Distillery. Last year SSC won the Export Award, the Innovation Award and the New Food Product Award.

Seaweed Puffs

Other aquaculture-related finalists this year include Isle of Barra Oysters and Alness seaweed harvester and processor New Wave Foods, both shortlisted for the New Product Award for oysters and SHØRE Seaweed Puffs respectively.

New Wave Foods is also in the final for the Innovation Award.

The Scottish Salmon Company said its shortlisting recognises the company’s achievement in growing its export business by highlighting Scottish provenance and the development of innovations such as its Native Hebridean Salmon strain.

Recognised quality

Chief executive Craig Anderson said: “As a local employer, we’re very proud of our Highlands and Islands heritage. The area is recognised around the world for its quality produce and these awards celebrate this well-earned reputation.

“To be shortlisted in two categories is great recognition of our commitment to building a sustainable business providing quality long-term employment, as well as supporting local suppliers and the regional economy.”

Held in association with Highlands & Islands Enterprise, the awards recognise the excellence of the region’s diverse food and drink sector and are now in their 14th year. 

The winners will be announced at a ceremony at the Kingsmills Hotel, Inverness on October 5, hosted by STV presenter Jennifer Reoch.