More than 106 exhibitors from all over the globe – a record number – will be displaying their latest products, services and innovations in the largest marquee ever erected in Scotland. Both the exhibition and the gala dinner are a sell-out, and advance visitor numbers well up on the previous event, held in 2012.
From the latest fish pens and feed delivery systems, through providers of fish health and environmental protection services, to quality assurance, training, funding and insurance, everything fish and shellfish farmers could possibly need can all be found under one roof.
The first day of the conference is an important one for six aquaculture researchers, who will present their papers in the hope of winning the Novartis award for the best presentation. This prestigious prize will see the winner taken on an expenses paid trip to Novartis Animal Health’s R&D facilities in Prince Edward Island, Canada.
Chaired by Dr Tim Rees, this session will be judged by a panel, and the winner announced at the gala dinner.
There is plenty to interest the aquaculture community on day two, when top industry speakers look at the challenges and opportunities for Scottish aquaculture. Richard Slaski, from the Scottish Aquaculture Research Forum, will speak about the medium and long term challenges, while Gino Bawn from IT Power will ask if aquaculture can be integrated with wave and wind energy. Biofouling and biosecurity will be covered by Dr Adrian MacLeod from SAMS, and her colleague Professor Kenny Black will look at the challenge presented by sealice. New technologies in fish breeding will be covered by Dr Alan Tinch from Landcatch Natural Selection Ltd, while moorings of the future is the subject of a presentation by Brendan Farrel of TFI Marine.
Conference organiser David Mack is delighted with the interest shown in AquacultureUK. “Advance visitor registrations are the best ever and this international event is expected to attract more than 1000 visitors from 23 countries,” he said.
“Despite last minute glitches, and a slight change of location for the marquee to avoid power cables and a nesting oystercatcher, we are looking forward to the UK’s biggest ever aqua show this week, with plenty to interest and inform all sectors of the industry. I am sure it will be a resounding success for all our exhibitors, who are looking forward to some lively discussions with key industry decision makers over the next few days.”