Uphold the code
AS Fish Farmer went to press, there was still no official news from the Scottish parliamentary inquiry into salmon farming, conducted earlier this year by the Rural Economy and Connectivity (REC) committee. MSPs have now held five meetings, in private, to consider their report and we must be patient. However, waiting for their recommendations has been made harder by leaks from within the REC to anti-salmon farming activists. The latest of these (see our news story on page 4) makes grim reading for the industry as it suggests that committee members have been willing to listen to those campaigning to shut down this valuable sector, rather than to those who operate within it.
Of course, such stories may be inaccurate and, in any case, the committee’s findings are not binding. Scotland’s fish farmers have always been fortunate to have the support of their minister, Fergus Ewing, to grow sustainably.
But it should not go unchallenged that some MSPs on the REC committee, with their own agendas against the growth of the industry, are in breach of the Code of Conduct for MSPs. As they are in a position to influence the future course of salmon farming, and of businesses vital to Scotland’s economy, we have a right to know who they are, and we hope the industry, through its representatives, will pressure the parliament to investigate before the REC report is published.