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Hot Topics for Discussion at Aquaculture UK 2008

UK - Some of the leading names in the fish farming industry will speak at the seminar programme of the Aquaculture UK 2008 exhibition in Aviemore on 21-22 May.

The conference will focus on the key themes of shellfish and new species farming, critical issues facing the Scottish salmon industry and fish welfare.

Among the speakers will be Howard Day of Dirt Consultants who will highlight how cockle culture could form an alternative source of income for landowners that have lost land through the inundation of coastal flood defences.

The line-up also includes Jimmie Hepburn of Aquavision, who will reveal details about his pioneering new venture in Devon to grow organic carp for the table.

Salmon will form a key element of the seminar programme, and will include a major presentation by Jonathan Shepherd, the director general of the International Fishmeal Organisation, on the effects of the current fish oil and meal market on the economically vital Scottish salmon industry.

The green card will be played on the second day of the conference with a presentation by Peter Stevenson of Compassion in World Farming on the welfare concerns of intensive fish farming. Bob Waller of Freedom Food will give a talk entitled ‘better ways to farm fish.

Sunil Kadri of Aquaculture Innovation will provide an update on the ‘Benefish’ project that is evaluating and modelling the costs and benefits of welfare management in aquaculture.

Delegates will get a chance to throw questions at the speakers at the end of the programme.

The exhibition and conference, which is the culmination of strong support from the Scottish industry for an event of this kind to be in the Highlands, will be officially opened by Scottish Government Minister for the Environment Michael Russell. David Mack, managing director of Aquaculture UK 2008 organiser Ascomber Ltd, said: "The conference programme is sure to incite comment and debate and with influential visitors expected from over 20 countries it will be a truly international event."

Details of the full seminar programme and how to pre-register online can be found at