SCOTLAND, UK - The value of the Scottish shellfish industry has increased by 18 per cent to £10.5 million at first sale value in 2014, according to the latest survey published by the Scottish Government.
The survey also shows 7,683 tonnes of mussels was produced in 2014, the highest ever on record, and the production of pacific oyster shells has increased by 9 per cent over the last year.
Commenting on the findings of the Scottish shellfish farm production survey 2014 Dr Aileen McLeod said: “I welcome today’s figures which highlight the continued growth in the shellfish sector, which is now worth £10.5 million at first sale.
“The aquaculture industry supports employment and the economic wellbeing of many fragile rural communities across Scotland. These latest figures also show employment levels in the shellfish industry have increased by 4 per cent in 2014.
“The Scottish shellfish industry has great potential and the sector is entering a significant period.
"The Shellfish Working Group has published an exciting programme of work, which includes a commitment to produce an industry-owned strategy for growth for the sector as well as supporting proposals for a Scottish shellfish hatchery.”
The Scottish Shellfish Farm Production Survey 2014 details statistics on the employment, production and value of shellfish from Scottish Shellfish Farms.
It is structured to follow industry trends within the mussel, Pacific oyster, native oyster, queen scallop and scallop species sectors. Some statistics are given for the 10-year period 2005-2014.
The main findings are:
• Production tonnage of mussels rose by 14 per cent from 6,757 tonnes in 2013 to 7,683 tonnes in 2014. This is the highest level of mussel production ever recorded in Scotland.
• Production of Pacific oyster shells increased by 79 per cent from the 2013 total. Pacific oyster production for on-growing has increased (9 per cent) from 6,216,000 shells in 2013 to 6,792,000 shells in 2014.
• Employment levels increased by 4 per cent from 2013, with 345 full, part-time and casual staff employed in 2014.
• Overall estimated value of the industry increased from £8.9 million in 2013 to £10.5 million in 2014.
You can view the full report by clicking here.
TheFishSite News Desk
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