Aquaculture for all

Entries invited for global Aquaculture Awards


The 2020 Aquaculture Awards have officially opened for entry today, allowing aquaculture companies from around the world plenty of time to prepare their entries and nominations before the 9 March 2020 deadline.

The awards, which will be presented during the Aquaculture UK exhibition in Aviemore on 20 May, are designed to showcase the cutting-edge innovations, promote best practice and pay tribute to the industry stalwarts in the world’s fastest growing protein production sector.

Following the success of the 2019 Aquaculture Awards – which generated record numbers of entries from around the globe – they will be open to international contenders from all aspects of this global sector.

The awards will be presented at a special dinner as part of Aquaculture UK 2020

“The 2019 awards generated widespread interest, attracting 78 entries from 16 countries. They also brought an international audience from across the aquaculture spectrum to the awards presentation ceremony in Scotland, helping to promote best practice in the industry,” says Nigel Balmforth, head of publishing at 5m.

“The 2020 awards categories have been chosen to highlight excellence across the sector, from the contribution of individuals just starting in the industry, to the impact made by established multi-nationals which have an ability to improve food security around the world. Following industry feedback, they will include four new categories,” says event organiser Susan Tinch.

“We’re currently inviting forward-thinking companies to sponsor the categories and have several category sponsorships still up for grabs,” she adds.

Carly Daniels, of the National Lobster Hatchery, was presented with an award by Paddy Campbell of BioMar in 2018

Awards categories

Best aquaculture company

Sponsored by Crown Estate Scotland this is awarded to the aquaculture company with the most impressive economic, ethical and environmental performance across the board.

Finfish farmer of the year

Awarded to the hands-on farmer – be they technician or manager – who has made a positive impact on their farm site, company and fish.

Shellfish farmer of the year

Awarded to a hands-on shellfish farmer who has made a positive impact on their site, company and shellfish.

Outstanding contribution to the industry

Sponsored by Marine Scotland, it is awarded to the individual or company that has enhanced how the wider public perceive the industry or have made an outstanding contribution to the sector through their work.

Environmental impact award

Sponsored by EWOS it will recognise an initiative that has contributed significantly to the environmental sustainability of the business.

Aquaculture supplier of the year

Awarded to the sector’s best purveyor of quality of products, services, technical advice and R&D.

Community initiative

Recognises programmes that have enhanced the industry’s relationship with their host communities.

Economic sustainability

Awarded to an initiative that has improved financial performance, created jobs, improved worker welfare, or enhanced company efficiency.

Animal Welfare

Sponsored by MSD, it will focus on initiatives that have improved the welfare of farmed fish and/or the wildlife they interact with.


Sponsored by the Scottish Aquaculture Innovation Centre, this category recognises ground-breaking initiatives that have improved production performance, animal welfare, processing, health and safety, sustainability or product development.

Rising star

Open to dynamic under-35s who have the potential to become leaders in the sector.

People’s choice

Delegates at Aquaculture UK and readers of The Fish Site will be able to vote for any company or individual that makes the shortlist of any of the other award categories.

Unsung hero

A new category dedicated to the stalwarts of the sector who’ve shunned the limelight but have put in no shortage valuable hard work.


Another new category, recognising those companies and/or academic institutions who have opted to eschew competition in favour of the good of the sector as a whole.

Stewart Graham, CEO of Gael Force won the Outstanding Contribution to Industry Award in 2018


Applications will be evaluated by a six-person panel of judges – to be announced shortly – who have been selected for their breadth of knowledge of the international aquaculture sector. They include well-known figures from industry and academia.

When examining the individual entries, the judges will consider the criteria identified for each category. Following consideration of all entries, the judging panel will identify shortlists for each category, from which the winners will be selected.

Entry and nomination process

Entries and nominations from both commercial and research sectors from around the world will be welcomed. To find out more about each of the categories and to enter or nominate please visit and complete the online forms. All entries and nominations will be dealt with in the strictest confidence.

Awards timetable

  • A full list of categories and details of how to enter the awards can be found at
  • The closing date for entries is 9 March.
  • The shortlists will be announced in early April and followed by the awards presentation dinner held as part of Aquaculture UK, in Aviemore, Scotland on 20 May.

Please visit the website or email for further information and put the date in your diary to ensure that you don’t miss out on this tremendous opportunity to join fellow industry professionals in celebrating the best of the best in global aquaculture.