Search for feed plant site on Scotland’s west coast
MARINE Harvest is looking for a site in Scotland to locate its £80 million fish farm feed plant. The development, announced before news of job cuts at the firm broke, will create full-time employment for 55 people, as well as significant opportunities in related service industries.
Further jobs will also be created during construction of the plant, which will take between a year and eighteen months.
The move follows a recent decision by the board of Marine Harvest to invest in a plant in Scotland that will produce feed for use on their Scottish fish farms, as well as for Ireland, Norway and the Faroes.
After opening and operating a large feed plant in Norway, Marine Harvest hope to replicate their success in Scotland.
Marine Harvest Scotland managing director Ben Hadfield, who is also the chief operating officer of feed for Marine Harvest globally, said: ‘This is a large investment in Scotland and should be welcome news for the host community, given the number of jobs. We have a similar plant in Norway which has proved enormously successful.’
Hadfield, who lived and worked in Fort William for 15 years, added: ‘This plant will allow us to meet our aspirations on sustainability, as well as learn from our experience at the Norwegian plant.
‘For example, it will use Liquid Natural Gas for most of its energy, providing a much reduced carbon footprint over current arrangements.
‘What we have done in Norway has created jobs directly in the local community and also generated employment for local contractors and suppliers.
‘We are in discussions with the owners of a number of sites and are seeking the views of local regulators, as well as Highlands and Islands Enterprise, and hope to be in a position to make a final decision on a preferred site within the next month.’
The feed plant needs to be in the west of Scotland and centrally located to provide easy access to Marine Harvest’s salmon farms on the west coast of the Highlands, Argyll and Bute and the Western Isles.
And as the feed will be delivered by boat to the farms, it needs to be a site on the coast with direct access to an existing jetty or pier, or offer the potential for one to be built.
The site needs to be a minimum of four acres to accommodate the various buildings that make up the feed plant.
Above: The new feed plant needs to have access to a jetty or pier