Full consultation is promised
Sir, I read with interest the Arran Banner article dated September 9 regarding our plans to develop our site at Lamlash and the subsequent letters published in the following week’s issue.
I fully appreciate that this is a topic that some in the local community feel strongly about. We will be undertaking a full programme of consultation with local residents and organisations to listen to their views and concerns.
In the meantime, I would like to take this opportunity to explain more about the development and what this means for Arran.
The Scottish Salmon Company’s operations are 100 per cent Scotland based and Lamlash is one of 60 sites we operate across the west coast and Hebrides.
It was one of the first fish farms in Scotland and has been operating successfully on Arran for about 30 years. As a company we are fiercely proud of its heritage.
While our intended plans for the site will increase its capacity, its location footprint will remain similar and we will be investing in modernising the equipment.
Our current Lamlash site lies within the South Arran MPA; it is located approximately 1.2km away from the nearest MPA feature and is also around 1.5km from the No Take Zone.
By developing the site in the current location, we intend to minimise any additional potential environmental impacts on the integrity of the MPA and NTZ.
At all times we operate with utmost consideration and appreciation for this surrounding natural environment.
As part of the planning exercise we will be undertaking a full Environmental Impact Assessment. Indeed, we will be submitting a Screening and Scoping request to North Ayrshire Council in the coming weeks with regards to this assessment which will rigorously examine any potential effects of increasing the volume of fish at the farm. We adhere to the highest levels of environmental protection across all our sites but we will work closely with key stakeholders to identify any further measures which would be required.
The salmon industry is a vital driver of the Scottish economy and we are known the world over for the quality of our produce.
On Arran we provide five people with stable full-time employment with a combined service of 50 years. We invest heavily in training for all members of our team and we want to provide not just jobs to the local area but quality, sustainable employment.
The development of our site at Lamlash will only enhance these opportunities and also increase our contribution to the regional economy through our commitment to local sourcing.
We use more than 20 suppliers and services in North Ayrshire, including Arran, and recently commissioned three new work boats built in Arran representing a sixfigure investment.
Over the coming weeks and months we will be engaging with the local community to gather their views and share more information on our proposals.
We have been an active member of the Arran community for many years, from supporting the Brodick Highland Games to working with local schools on health and wellbeing. We are fully committed to continuing this strong relationship throughout the consultation process and I hope we can count on your support.
Yours, Craig Anderson CEO The Scottish Salmon Company