Despite a fall in overall fish purchases, the latest economic report from Salmon Scotland has revealed the growing popularity of Scottish salmon among UK consumers.
UK market demand over 2021 saw fresh, chilled salmon retail sales rise by 4.9 percent from £1.047 billion in 2020, with the volumes consumed increasing 7.8 percent to 63,300 tonnes, up from 58,700 tonnes.
The total fresh chilled fish market increased by 4.2 percent in terms of sales to £2.6 billion, but there was a slight fall in the overall fish market of 0.2 percent to £4.243 billion.
Salmon is one of the healthiest products to eat, with a single portion providing more than 70 percent of daily vitamin D needs and more than half of recommended protein amounts.
Tavish Scott, chief executive of Salmon Scotland, said: “Scottish salmon is the best, healthiest and most nutritious product that we can put on our plates.
“The rise in consumption here in the UK shows that more consumers recognise the health values and unrivalled quality of Scottish salmon, with year-on-year improvements to the way producers are rearing and feeding their stock which meet the highest welfare standards.
“Our industry is also a global success story, with Scottish salmon comfortably the UK’s biggest food export.
“The quality of Scotland’s produce is widely recognised in our largest markets of France, the USA and China, and we are also seeing sharp increases in newer international markets.
“All this is testament to the hard work and dedication of Scotland’s farmers, who produce a world-leading product that makes a massive contribution to our economy and people’s health.”
The new report from trade body Salmon Scotland also further analyses official UK Government export figures, revealing the total volume of Scottish salmon sold abroad was 97,835 tonnes in 2021 – a 36 percent increase year-on-year. This included strong recoveries in mature markets such as France and the USA, but also high growth in China and Singapore.
Analysis has also confirmed that Scottish salmon remained the UK’s biggest food export, followed by bread and pastries, chocolate, cereals, and cheese.
The farm-raised salmon industry directly employs 2,500 people in Scotland and supports more than 3,600 suppliers, with 10,000 jobs dependent on the sector.