Danish solutions aiding Scotland's aquaculture ambitions
Danish seafood equipment suppliers are hoping to play a strategic part in Scotland’s plan to double the economic value and production of its aquaculture sector by 2030, according to Martin Winkel, head of the Danish Fish Tech Group.
With close to 100 members, Winkel’s organization is the largest Danish export network of suppliers to the global fishing, aquaculture, and seafood processing industries.
The ambituous ”Aquaculture Growth to 2030” plan for Scotland aims to see the industry grow from GBP 1.8 billion (USD 2.5 billion, EUR 2 billion) to GBP 3.6 billion (USD 4.9 billion, EUR 4 billion billion) and generate more than 9,000 new jobs.
“We invited industry representatives from Scotland to our recent supplier networking meeting in Denmark, where they gave us an insight into their plans and heard how the Danish sector operates,” Winkel said.
Stewart Graham, chief executive of Scottish aquaculture engineering and equipment supplier Gael Force, explained that key actions needed to achieve Plan 2030 include addressing biological challenges such as sea lice, rationalizing operational regulations, and implementing new product technologies across the supply chain.
“In Scotland, we have massively underexploited our supply chain, so we were interested to see how networks of suppliers like Danish Fish Tech Group and their member companies work,” Graham said. “We can learn from them and continue to form partnerships that lead to benefits in export or investments.”
In May, Danish suppliers will make a reciprocal visit to Scotland, to take part in a national stand at the Aquaculture UK 2018 exhibition in Aviemore. This trip will enable them to showcase products, solutions and services for onshore and offshore fish farms and the seafood processing sector.
Elaine Jamieson, head of food and drink at Scotland Highlands and Islands Enterprise, said the partnership can provide a new avenue to growing Scotland’s seafood industry.
“As the global population grows, demand for sustainable protein will increase significantly and bring huge opportunities for businesses across the whole aquaculture supply chain. Denmark is an innovative country with a number of key aquaculture strengths such as recirculation systems. We were pleased to share our story with Danish companies and to explore international opportunities which could be to our mutual benefit, and look forward to welcoming them to Scotland,” Jameson said.