Environment Minister praises sector’s world reputation
Winners of The Crown Estate’s 2013 Scottish Marine Aquaculture Awards were announced last night (Thursday 13 June), celebrating the achievements and success of an industry that is vitally important to Scotland’s coastal communities.
An awards ceremony and dinner was held at Prestonfield House in Edinburgh with a keynote address from Scotland’s Environment Minister, Paul Wheelhouse MSP.
The Crown Estate’s Scottish Commissioner Gareth Baird said, “All the winners displayed an exceptional level of innovation and responsibility in their approach to business and to environmental sustainability – critical for the continuing success of an industry that is critically important to Scotland’s coastal communities and local economies. With a record number of entries this year, The Crown Estate is proud to provide a platform to highlight the sterling work within the industry. ”
The Crown Estate, which manages the seabed, provides leases for fish farms and contributes to the development of the aquaculture industry, working alongside communities, industry and government. It has invested £1 million in research and development to support the industry over the last five years, addressing issues such as sea lice and jellyfish blooms.
Two new categories were introduced this year: ‘Seafood Product’ and ‘Community Initiative’, to acknowledge the wider scope of industry engagement and business.
Environment and Climate Change Minister Paul Wheelhouse said, “Scotland has gained an international reputation as being the home of a prosperous, thriving and high quality aquaculture sector. The sector helps to underpin sustainable economic growth and makes a vital contribution to the many rural communities where much of the activity takes place.
“There is still significant potential for further expansion both in employment and export earnings in finfish aquaculture and shellfish growing and the Scottish Government is committed to supporting this sustainable growth, with due regard to the marine environment.
“These awards are a well-earned celebration of the many achievements and successes of this industry that ensures Scotland remains a key player on the world stage.”
Winners, who are both members of the ASSG!
Outstanding Contribution to Industry - Stephen Cameron
Stewardship Award - The Loch Ryan Oyster Fishery Company Ltd - Repopulating the Loch Ryan Oyster Beds for the Next Generation