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Irish fish sector eyes increasing value of farmed products

IRELAND - The value of fish and shellfish from Irish fish farms rose last year by 13 per cent. Revenues increased from 110.2 million in 2005 to 124.6 million in 2006, a sure sign that the sector is growing with continued potential.

The latest industry statistics are published in a report - 'The Status of Irish Aquaculture 2006' - launched by Marine Minister John Browne, today.

Although values are up production for 2006 actually fell by 8 per cent to 57,422 tonnes. Profitability increased because of the dramatic increase seen in the price of farmed shellfish (29 per cent) and stability in the farmed finfish sector - notably salmon and trout. Another bonus has been the novel developments of farmed cod, perch, sea urchins, abalone and other species, which is now common on a number of Irish fish farms.

Speaking during a meeting of the Department of Agriculture, Fisheries and Food Aquaculture Forum, Minister John Browne said the figures were good news. They were just short of Irish aquaculture's all-time peak value for production of €125 million, which was achieved in 2002.

The status 2006 report, was produced by An Bord Iascaigh Mhara (BIM), the Marine Institute and Taigdhe Mara Teo. (the marine development subsidiary of Údarás na Gaeltachta). It gives a detailed analysis of the Irish aquaculture industry in 2006. It has specific sections dedicated to a wide variety of subjects, from production and employment to research and development, quality control, assurance and traceability. It wil be available on general release shortly.

Further Reading

- You can view a Fact file on the Irish Seafood Industry by clicking here.