UK - Scottish Sea Farms was last night crowned winner of the Scottish Food & Drink Excellence Award for Innovation for its pioneering approach to sea lice control – an approach co-funded by the Scottish Aquaculture Innovation Centre (SAIC).
Involving the co-habitation of farmed salmon with commercially-farmed wrasse that eat sea lice, the £4.05m project is a collaboration between Scottish Sea Farms, Marine Harvest Scotland, the University of Stirling’s renowned Institute of Aquaculture and feed manufacturer BioMar, and was the very first project to be supported by SAIC.
Instrumental in initiating the collaboration, Scottish Sea Farms was praised by judges for improving the quality of its own products while at the same time creating a new commercial opportunity for the whole industry.
The company also went on to win the Business of the Year, known as the ‘champion of champion’ award for results above and beyond those recognised in the individual categories.
Upon receiving the awards, Managing Director of Scottish Sea Farms and SAIC Board member Jim Gallagher said: “Producing exceptionally nutritious salmon whilst maintaining best environmental practice is at the heart of everything we do at Scottish Sea Farms: from our expert husbandry and premium feeds, to our use of cleaner fish to help keep stocks in optimum health.
“To be recognised by an awards scheme as highly regarded as the Scottish Food & Drink Excellence Awards for both our commitment to commercial innovation drawing on the best of Scottish research know-how, and as Business of the Year from across the entire food and drink industry, is a huge honour. It also serves as further encouragement to all of us working in the sector to continue innovating in order to grow the profitability of Scottish salmon, creating and sustaining jobs around Scotland's coastline.”
Added SAIC CEO Heather Jones: “The award win gives a strong flavour as to why Scottish Sea Farms is one of Scotland’s most successful seafood businesses. The company has a long-term commitment to innovation and a broad vision to grow the industry. It is a leading light in the sector, driving novel approaches and positive change.
“Working with the team on the cleaner fish project is an immensely insightful and rewarding experience, creating shared learning between academic researchers and industry practitioners. This project is already delivering value to Scottish Sea Farms and other companies in Scotland, and the benefits will extend to supporting the growth of Scottish aquaculture as a whole.”
Also successful on the night was SAIC consortium member company Loch Fyne Oysters which won the Investing in People Award.
TheFishSite News Desk