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Survey: Pacific Oyster Production Up 45 Per Cent

SCOTLAND, UK - A new report has been released based on the returns of an annual survey questionnaire sent to all active registered shellfish farming companies in Scotland.

"The cooperation of the shellfish farming industry is gratefully acknowledged," says Marine Scotland who conducted the survey.

Production survey questionnaires were sent to 169 companies registered as active during 2008. All return forms were received. One wild mussel fishery registered as a shellfish farm has been excluded from this report.

The survey showed that, of the 168 companies registered at the end of 2008 and included in this report, 112 recorded no sales during that year.

The survey results concluded that:

  • mussel and Pacific oyster remain the main species produced in terms of both value and tonnage Mussel production increased by 22 per cent while Pacific oyster production increased by 45 per cent during 2008;

  • There has been no change in the production of scallop which remains low. Poor results from spat recruitment have reportedly led to this low production in recent years;

  • There has been a significant increase of 79 per cent in the production of queen in 2008;

  • Employment levels showed a 14 per cent decrease from the previous year with 348 full, part-time and casual staff being employed during 2008;

  • Surveillance for the shellfish diseases bonamiasis and marteiliasis was maintained in 2008. Movement restrictions are in place for the presence of Bonamia ostreae at Loch Sunart and West Loch Tarbet;

  • For shellfish health purposes, one third of all shellfish sites was inspected by FRS Fish Health Inspectorate during 2008. In 2009, with the Implementation of EEC Directive 2006/88, risk based surveillance of sites will be introduced;

  • Again the industry was dominated by small producers, although there was a continued and marked trend toward large companies contributing to the annual production of all species.

Further Reading

- You can view the full report by clicking here.

the Fish Site Editor

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