Cooke Aquaculture has unveiled plans for a new salmon farm in the waters between Muckle Roe and Vementry, Shetland.
The proposed project, estimated to cost around £5 million, is an ambitious one, involving the installation of 12 salmon pens, each stretching an impressive 120 meters in length. If given the green light, this development could potentially create five new full-time job opportunities, offering a welcome boost to the local economy.
The proposed salmon farm is strategically located just off the north side of Vementry. In addition to the salmon pens, the plans include mooring a feed barge to the south of the pen group.
The proposed site’s high-energy environment is expected to provide optimal conditions for nurturing robust and healthy fish while minimizing potential adverse effects on the local environment.
To engage the community and gather valuable input, two public meetings have been scheduled to discuss the project’s intricacies.
Cooke Aquaculture’s decision to embark on this venture is underpinned by its extensive experience in developing offshore fish farms, particularly in Orkney. The company is keen to leverage this expertise to establish a new farm in the more exposed surroundings of Shetland.
This proposal follows the community’s past opposition to plans by Grieg Seafood to create a salmon farm near the Muckle Ayre beach. Those earlier plans eventually fell through. In this case, the proposed Cooke salmon farm would be located away from Muckle Roe, instead positioning itself just off the island of Vementry.
In parallel with Cooke Aquaculture’s project, Scottish Sea Farms is actively developing plans for a large salmon farm near South Whiteness. This separate initiative seeks to consolidate existing licenses into a new farm, initially featuring nine 160-meter salmon pens and one 120-meter pen.
A formal planning application for Scottish Sea Farms’ project is expected to be submitted to the council next month, further reflecting the ongoing expansion and development within Shetland’s aquaculture industry.