Scottish Sea Farms embarks on multimillion spending blitz ahead of new salmon farm launch

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Salmon farmer Scottish Sea Farms is to spend over GBP 3 million with suppliers throughout Scotland as it prepares to open its new salmon farm off Lober Rock in the Scapa Flow, Orkney.

In a press release, Scottish Sea Farms wrote that they are investing GBP 3.3 million in infrasrtucture, over 90% of which will be spent with Scottish businesses.

The new farm is due to go live in autumn 2019.

The newly-awarded contracts include:
· £1.74m with the Gael Force Group in Inverness to build a 200t steel feed barge – the first to be built at the former Corpach Boatyard in Fort William – along with moorings, 12 x 80m salmon pens, underwater cameras and environmental monitoring technology.
· £665k with Macduff Shipyards in Aberdeenshire to build a 14m catamaran workboat.
· £324k with W&J Knox in Ayrshire including Seal Pro netting systems to help keep local marine life and salmon stocks safely apart, and maintain Scottish Sea Farms’ record of no seal shootings in Orkney for over three years.
· £106k with Leask Marine in Orkney to secure the moorings, barge and pens.

SSF Westerbister pens, Orkney PHOTO: SSF

Scottish Sea Farms’ Managing Director Jim Gallagher said: “These orders will equip our new farm with the latest technologies, ensuring we’re Scottish Technical Standard 2020 compliant and giving our salmon the very best environment in which to grow. We’ve worked with several of these suppliers for many years now as part of our long-standing policy of buying Scottish wherever possible and know their products to be tried and tested with regards to withstanding Orkney marine conditions.”

Scottish Sea Farms’ Regional Production Manager for Orkney Richard Darbyshire explains: “Not only will we be working with local suppliers to the sector, but our salmon pens will be constructed by Gael Force Fusion on the remote island of Sanday, generating spend on everything from hauliers, ferry travel and accommodation at the nearby Kettletoft Hotel, to generators, welfare units and sundries for as much as three months or more.”

Leask Marine Managing Director Douglas Leask added: “This latest expansion is great news, both for Scottish Sea Farms and locally. It secures steady employment for our specialist dive teams, increases opportunities for one of our larger vessels operating in Orkney waters and, in turn, will bring additional onward spend in our local communities.”

The salmon farmer added that these latest contract awards come on the back of a year in which Scottish Sea Farms spent a record GBP 113m across 676 local suppliers. GBP 33 million of that was invested in its new RAS smolt hatchery at Barcaldine – equating to 75 per-cent of total supplier spend in 2018, with plans to invest a further GBP 25 million in capital infrastructure projects over the next 12 months.