Fish farms hampered

Salmon exports expected to fall from record level

Salmon production is at a new high

Salmon farmers are expecting a fall in exports this year despite stocks likely to be higher than last year’s record-breaking production level.

Figures published by the Scottish Government show the sector farmed 203,881 tonnes of salmon last year, an increase of 30.7% on 2018.

Earlier this year statistics from HMRC showed that exports of fresh Scottish salmon had also achieved a record high with an increase of 26% to 94,000 tonnes.

Production is expected to hit 207,000 tonnes this year and exports are said to be back to last year’s level.

However, the lockdown will severely hit the total export figure for 2020.

Hamish Macdonell, director of strategic engagement at the Scottish Salmon Producers Organisation (SSPO), said the figures showed that the sector injected significant sums into many of Scotland’s most sparsely populated rural areas and boosted the economy as a whole.

“This is a sector we can all be proud of,” he said.

Rural Economy Secretary Fergus Ewing admitted the sector faced challenges from the pandemic and Brexit.

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