Wednesday, March 1, 2017

02/03/2017: New Industry Leadership Group for aquaculture backed by Scottish Government

Cabinet Secretary for Rural Economy commits to working with industry to create sustainable growth

Scotland’s new Industry Leadership Group (ILG) for aquaculture has held its inaugural meeting, with Rural Economy Secretary Fergus Ewing attending the meeting and backing its mission.

Image: Dave Conner
The launch of the industry-led group marks the first step in delivering the ambitious ‘Aquaculture Growth to 2030’ Strategy, launched in late 2016.

This aims to double aquaculture’s contribution to the Scottish economy to £3.6bn a year by tackling the industry’s key blockers and challenges, and unlocking growth.

The group will play a crucial role in driving implementation of the strategy, which made recommendations on matters ranging from regulation and planning to innovation support.

 Discussions at this first meeting of the group included:

1. The need for proportionate regulation and a more enabling approach from regulators

2. The strong sustainability credentials of Scottish aquaculture

3. The growing global demand for protein and Scottish aquaculture’s potential to play a world-leading role in providing resource-efficient food

4. The launch of a roadmap for innovation to 2030

5. The ongoing work and investment by the aquaculture industry to address biological challenges

6. Next steps in delivering the recommendations of the 2030 Strategy, and progress on that to date.

Fergus Ewing, Cabinet Secretary for the Rural Economy and Connectivity, said, “I was delighted to attend the inaugural meeting of the aquaculture Industry Leadership Group.”

“The industry deserves credit for taking the initiative to establish this group. It marks an important step for the future of Scotland’s aquaculture industry and I look forward to working with all parties towards the goal of creating continued sustainable growth across this key industry.”

“I am confident that the group can become an engine of expertise, supporting and mentoring emerging ideas and setting a strategic framework for achieving the aspirations of the 2030 Vision through balanced and stable growth.”

Co-chair of the Industry Leadership Group (ILG) Stewart Graham, Managing Director of Gael Force Group, added, “The Cabinet Secretary’s engagement with our first meeting, and our discussions about industry challenges and opportunities was very welcome. There was a firm recognition at this first meeting of the potential of industry and different parts of the public sector to collaborate effectively to support sustainable growth in a key industry for Scotland.”

“Already, we’re seeing progress in the pipeline on several of the recommendations in the strategy, and we will keep the wider industry updated on these as we deliver them.”

“The formation of the 2030 Aquaculture Strategy signalled the ambition of all parts of the aquaculture value chain to contribute further to Scotland’s economic growth and communities. Now, the launch of this industry leadership group – the first recommendation in the strategy – and the strong backing of the Cabinet Secretary for sustainable growth in the industry, provides crucial momentum for implementing the strategy achieving its ambitions.”

Read more HERE.

The Aquaculturists
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