Scottish Sea Farms has started to partner with Internet service providers to bring broadband to its most remote farming locations, starting with the three farms at Loch Nevis, it has been learned.
The company informed media on Monday that faster, more-reliable internet has enabled the three farms to be equipped with remote feeding and monitoring systems. The remote feeding and monitoring are seen as key fish-health advances, but the digital connection enabling them has helped the company sort out other issues.
The company has also invested in a dedicated fibre optic connection supplied by community internet service provider, HUBS CIC. It’ll link the networks of both companies for quick fixes should a fault occur.
A bonus for paying 50-percent of the costs of the broadband and Internet seems to be the increased attractiveness for job-seekers contemplating life in remote, salmon-farming areas of Scotland. The Internet means smart-TVs, gaming and live-streamed applications like YouTube, Netflix, Amazon Prime or even ordinary, streamed Microsoft-made programs.
Recruiting and hanging on to staff for remote job placements is a Top 3 issue for the aquaculture industry in Scotland, Canada and Chile. Broadband is sure to help, but the company said fish-health was the initial goal this time.
“Each and every pound that our company invests is focused on one thing — enhancing the health and welfare of our fish,” said Scottish Sea Farms managing director, Jim Gallagher, in a statement.
The company is already working with another remote community, Drimnin, on the shores of the Sound of Mull, where high-speed and Wi-Fi will be firsts for areas previously bereft of all mod-coms.