Ir­ish seafood breaks bil­lion euro bar­rier

Fish Farmer - - European News -

SALES of Ir­ish seafood – both farmed and caught - broke through the bil­lion euro bar­rier for the first time last year, with more than half that fig­ure sold as ex­ports.

The an­nual re­port from Bord Ias­caigh Mhara (BIM) said that seafood ex­ports grew by 10 per cent to € 666 mil­lion, and the do­mes­tic mar­ket in­creased by four per cent to € 429 mil­lion.

BIM has de­scribed 2017 as an ex­cep­tional year for Ire­land’s marine econ­omy. Chief ex­ec­u­tive Jim O’Toole said that an ear­lier € 240 mil­lion al­lo­cated un­der the Seafood De­vel­op­ment Pro­gramme had played a ma­jor role.

‘This fund­ing fa­cil­i­tates the in­dus­try’s ef­forts to com­pete in the fast paced global mar­ket place,’ he said.

‘In ad­di­tion, € 30 mil­lion of on­go­ing EU sup­port from the Na­tional Strate­gic Plan for Sus­tain­able De­vel­op­ment of Aqua­cul­ture has en­abled BIM to im­ple­ment a range of schemes to sup­port the aqua­cul­ture sec­tor.’

He also told the Ir­ish In­de­pen­dent that the coun­try was well placed to take ad­van­tage of global seafood trends.

BIM chair­man of Kieran Cal­nan said the seafood sec­tor is fast be­com­ing one of the ma­jor con­trib­u­tors to Ire­land’s in­ter­na­tional rep­u­ta­tion.

Above: Jim O’Toole

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