Aquaculture for all

Proccessing Job Cuts Epected for Scottish Salmon Company

Salmonids Processing Economics +3 more

SCOTLAND, UK - The Scottish Salmon Company (SSC) has announced that it is reviewing its harvesting and processing requirements in Stornoway and expects to have to cut jobs in the spring of 2013.

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A consultation process has begun with staff to explore options to redeploy people where possible or offer assistance to find alternative employment, reports local newspaper, StornowayGazette.

Over the past year, the the growth of salmon has been impeded by biological challenges, leaving lower volumes for 2013. The company was also unable to get planning permission for additional sites meaning the processing facility cannot be operated efficiently, said the newspaper.

Volumes are expected to increase by the end of 2013 however when it is hoped that fish from the new site in the Highland region are ready to be harvested.

The company is also pursuing new planning consents at other locations in the Western Isles and the mainland, which would secure the levels of production needed for its Marybank and Arnish facilities to work at full capacity in the longer term.

Stewart McLelland, SSCs chief executive, told the newspaper: We deeply regret this situation, but hope that we can reassure local communities that once more sites start to produce fish, we will once again have the volumes that make full production at Marybank and Arnish viable again.

Despite our best efforts to correct the imbalance of production cycles across the companys operation, we have not been able to establish and develop new sites as originally expected within the necessary timescales. This process of expansion continues but, for the moment, there is now a time lag before sufficient numbers of next generation of fish can be harvested and processed through Marybank.

Coupled with this is the fact that our fish were affected by Amoebic Gill Disease. This naturally occurring amoeba which impacts fish health is exacerbated by warm weather and a lack of rain and, like many in the industry we were affected at a critical time last summer.

Finally, the uncharacteristically low market price for salmon in 2012 meant that our income has been reduced. When combined with insufficient fish to process, it is another reason why we cannot operate Marybank, in the short term, without cutting jobs.

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