Increased automation central to £15m upgrade of Mowi processing plant

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Mowi says that increased automation will make manual jobs at the Blar Mhor plant, such as heavy lifting, much easier, and that, in future, over 80 per cent of the boxes will be robotically lifted. 

Planning permission has been granted by The Highland Council for the upgrade of the Mowi processing facility at Blar Mhor in Fort William which the company claims will transform it into one of the most efficient and highest capacity fish processing facilities in the world.

According to an article in Mowi’s company newsletter, contracts have already been signed with Marel for infeed to gutting lines, graders and packing lines and Samey for robotic solution for final product box stacking. The tender process for building works is due to start later this month.

Scott Nolan, Processing Director, said: “Mowi is investing around £15 million in the upgrade of this facility, securing the long-term future of the plant here in Fort William and incorporating market-leading innovation and technology that will put us at the forefront of salmon processing. We will have the capability to pack 200 fish a minute which is phenomenal.”

The company says that increased automation is set to make manual jobs, such as heavy lifting, much easier, and that, in future, over 80 per cent of the boxes will be robotically lifted.

Scott continues: “We will be presenting staff with a 3D fly through of the vision for the Blar later this month. That will be a key opportunity for us to get input into the plans and how we can improve their working environment such as break out areas and refreshment facilities.”

It is hoped that the new build, an extension of 700 m2 featuring a two-storey extension of 45m by 15m will be completed in Q2 next year.