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Acquisition Will Develop Scampi Exports

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SCOTLAND - Associated Seafoods Ltd has acquired prawn processor Moray Seafoods Ltd in a move that will secure the future of the company and herald the beginning of a new strategy to develop the domestic and export markets for quality langoustine and scampi.

Moray has endured difficult trading in recent months and the involvement of Associated Seafoods will provide the resources necessary to reinvigorate the business and develop a strategy for future development.

The acquisition of the Buckie-based company is also great news for the Scottish prawn fleet, with Moray Seafoods being a major buyer of langoustine from fishermen, accounting for 4m to 5m of purchases per annum.

This is the second seafood processing acquisition made by Associated Seafoods in the last few days the first being premium salmon smoker Lossie Seafoods Ltd, who are also based in Buckie.

Moray Seafoods was established in 1958 and plays an important role in the economy of Buckie, employing around 50 people. The company specialises in fresh and frozen langoustine, as well as scampi, and supplies both the UK and export markets.

Bill Hazeldean, chairman of Associated Seafoods, says the acquisition will provide the springboard for expansion into new markets that will eventually be fuelled by product innovation to maximise the potential of langoustine landings into the processing facility.

Quality Scottish-caught langoustine is a marvellous product that is in huge demand in many parts of the world. It is sustainably fished, tastes great and is healthy to eat, he said.

We feel there is huge potential in developing the market for langoustine both in the UK and abroad, involving new marketing strategies and innovation, including new value-added products. We believe that with the continued goodwill of the employees, customers and suppliers, there is an exciting future for Moray Seafoods.

Victor West has been appointed as the new managing director of Moray Seafoods a role he will combine with heading-up Lossie Seafoods. He joins the company from Food Partners Ltd, where he was business development director. Prior to then, he was supply chain director at Macrae Group in Fraserburgh and has considerable knowledge and experience of the seafood industry.