‘The salmon in our waters are a key part of ‘Brand Scotland’: Labour leader hails salmon industry

Editorial Staff

Politicians have highlighted the significant contributions of the salmon farming sector to the UK’s economy and employment.

Two of Scotland’s leading politicians met with representatives from the Scottish salmon sector this week at the Aquaculture UK trade show in Aviemore. The event highlighted the significant contributions of the sector to the UK’s economy and employment.

Scottish Labour leader Anas Sarwar and the SNP’s employment and investment minister, Tom Arthur, attended the event to learn more about the industry, which is the UK’s largest food export.

Sarwar addressed the Salmon Scotland AGM, emphasizing the importance of Scottish salmon as a key component of ‘Brand Scotland’ and its role in attracting inward investment and boosting exports. He also launched the Young Aquaculture Society, a new initiative aimed at helping young people develop connections and find employment opportunities in the sector.

SNP politician Tom Arthur, in his welcome speech at Aquaculture UK, highlighted the well-paid jobs and career opportunities provided by the sector, particularly in rural and island communities.

Scottish salmon, the UK’s top food export, generates around £600 million in international sales and is the most popular fish among UK consumers. The sector directly employs 2,500 people, mainly in remote areas, and supports an additional 10,000 jobs through the supply chain, contributing over £760 million to the Scottish economy.

After his visit, Anas Sarwar stated, “The Scottish salmon sector creates thousands of jobs and generates hundreds of millions of pounds for the economy. The salmon in our waters are a key part of ‘Brand Scotland’, contributing to inward investment and exports. We need to build the right business environment in Scotland to help sectors like this thrive with responsible growth and high animal welfare standards.”

Tom Arthur, MSP and Scottish Government minister for employment and innovation, said, “Aquaculture is a major contributor to our economy, providing well-paid jobs and careers, particularly in our rural and island communities. Our policy is to support sustainable growth in the right places, promoting the benefits the sector delivers for Scotland while ensuring protection for our shared natural environment.”

Tavish Scott, chief executive of Salmon Scotland, noted, “The Scottish salmon sector enjoys cross-party political support in the Scottish parliament. Our members appreciated hearing from Anas and Tom, especially after recent political turmoil in Holyrood. This year’s AGM theme, ‘growing salmon, growing Scotland’, reflects our contributions to employment, the economy, and Scotland’s global reputation through our top food export.”


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