Scotland business

Scottish Sea Farms given green light for £35m hatchery

smolts Image copyright Scottish Sea Farms
Image caption The company will rear young salmon, or smolts, at the new freshwater facility at Barcaldine

Salmon producer Scottish Sea Farms (SSF) has been given the green light to build a new £35m freshwater hatchery in Argyll.

The company said it had been granted planning permission for the hatchery at Barcaldine, near Oban, following consultation with the local community.

The move will create up to 25 permanent skilled jobs.

Construction of the land-based freshwater facility is expected to start within weeks.

The site will be used to rear young salmon, or smolts, until they are ready to transfer to sea farms.

'Will be transformational'

The first fish reared in the facility are expected to enter the water in 2019.

SSF said the investment was part of plans to invest a total of £70m in improving and maintaining its existing sites and acquiring new ones over the next few years.

Managing director Jim Gallagher said: "This will be transformational for Scottish Sea Farms, raising our production of smolts from five million to 11 million annually, and helping us to meet the rising global demand for our premium Scottish salmon and to grow our harvest volumes and revenues sustainably.

"It will also further increase our contribution to Scotland's economic prosperity and the development of our coastal communities."

SSF, which has more than 440 employees, is jointly owned by SalMar and the Leroy Seafood Group of Norway.

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