Skipper show

Ninth ex­hi­bi­tion in city is ‘busiest ever’

Fish Farmer - - Contents – Editor’s Welcome - BY SCOTT BINNIE

Fish farm­ing fo­cus

THE Skipper Expo Show, held at the Aberdeen Ex­hi­bi­tion and Con­fer­ence Cen­tre last month, at­tracted record vis­i­tors, said the or­gan­is­ers. ‘In the nine years we’ve run the Aberdeen show, this was our busiest ever first day,’ said Mara Me­dia spokesman Hugh Bon­ner. ‘Peo­ple were lit­er­ally queu­ing out the door.

‘We had 850 peo­ple in an hour and a half, and 1,300 in the full day. And Satur­day has also been very busy.

‘We have 250 com­pa­nies, in­clud­ing 27 boat and ship­builders and 25 dif­fer­ent na­tion­al­i­ties.

‘The fish­ing and aqua­cul­ture in­dus­tries are in a healthy state. Next year, to­gether with our main sponsors, the Scot­tish Fish­ing Fed­er­a­tion, we hope to move the show to new and larger fa­cil­i­ties in Dyce, but up to this point, noth­ing has been signed.’

Although pre­dom­i­nantly for the trawler fish­ing in­dus­try, Skipper Expo had a sig­nif­i­cant over­lap with aqua­cul­ture, with prod­ucts and ser­vices also aimed at fish farms.

SeaQuest Sys­tems, from Done­gal, Ire­land, showed its 40cm pump, now op­er­at­ing on board the ship Volt Pro­ces­sor, in con­junc­tion with Op­til­ice, the de-lic­ing sys­tem from Op­ti­mar.

Some 400 tonnes of salmon an hour can be pumped and SeaQuest claims that stress lev­els on fish are 300 per cent less than with tra­di­tional pumps.

An­other 40cm pump is on its way to Chile and the 30cm ver­sion, to be launched later this year, has four units pre-sold to a North Amer­i­can cus­tomer.

Peter­head and Fraser­burgh based PBP Ser­vices, provider of pro­tec­tive coat­ing sys­tems, has re­cently made a £150,000 in­vest­ment in a new ro­botic blast sur­face clean­ing sys­tem, and has been ap­pointed of­fi­cial in­su­la­tion part­ner for De­gafloor.

This is ideal for ap­ply­ing to all in­dus­trial floor­ing, par­tic­u­larly fish pro­cess­ing com­pa­nies, said the firm.

The Ger­man resin cures and dries in 90 min­utes, al­low­ing five coats to be ap­plied quickly and ef­fi­ciently to give a seam­less resin fin­ish. Re­cent busi­ness has come from Nor­way, Den­mark, Ire­land and Bahrain.

Pro­tec­tive cloth­ing com­pany Guy Cot­ten con­tin­ues to use its knowl­edge of the mar­ket to in­tro­duce new items to its range, in­clud­ing the Iso­max jacket with bib and brace, and added apron, giv­ing ex­tra pro­tec­tion ex­actly where needed.

Both Gael Force and Vonin ex­hib­ited, con­cen­trat­ing mostly on their trawler and fish­ing re­lated prod­ucts.

Man­u­fac­tur­ers of cages, nets, and ropes had a big pres­ence in Aberdeen. All the way from Peru was FISA (Fi­bras In­dus­tri­ales). With more than 70 years’ ex­pe­ri­ence, in­clud­ing in the aqua­cul­ture in­dus­try in Chile, Fisa is now look­ing to bring its range of cages and nets to Euro­pean fish farms - in par­tic­u­lar, Supra, its HDPE anti-preda­tor net­ting that has been so suc­cess­ful in Chile.

Sales direc­tor Yoni Radzin­ski had also hoped to ex­hibit at Aqua Nor later this year but the show was al­ready full when he tried to book in Novem­ber last year.

Also to­wards the end of 2018, Ir­ish net maker Swan Net Gundry opened a new base in Shetland, un­der the SNG Aqua ban­ner.

Ini­tially for net re­pairs and a net wash­ing fa­cil­ity, the firm has since ap­plied for plan­ning permission for a new build­ing, and when com­plete, fur­ther aqua­cul­ture ser­vices can be de­vel­oped.

Lo­cal com­pany Euronete, from Aberdeen­shire, con­tin­ues to concentrat­e on net­ting and ropes for the pelagic fish­ing in­dus­try, but it sees the po­ten­tial of grow­ing the busi­ness within aqua­cul­ture, by em­pha­sis­ing the qual­ity of the prod­uct and ser­vice it pro­vides.

As men­tioned above, a great many ship, boat and barge builders and re­pair­ers at­tended, in­clud­ing sev­eral for the first time.

Bredgaard Boats from Den­mark builds fi­bre­glass ves­sels ideal for use as fish farm work­boats.

The boats are cus­tom built to order and can have a six to eight-month timescale from plan­ning to fin­ish- good news for any fish farm look­ing for a short lead-time.

An­other first time Aberdeen ex­hibitor was Da­men Ship­yards, from the Nether­lands. Da­men pro­duces work­boats ‘off the shelf’ but with mod­i­fi­ca­tions avail­able for the ad­di­tion of cranes and other in­di­vid­ual re­quire­ments, such as the Volt Pro­ces­sor (see above), a 40m de-lous­ing ship.

Euro­pean sales man­ager Mike Be­sijn told Fish Farmer: ‘Aqua­cul­ture is grow­ing and we’d like more in­volve­ment. We lis­ten care­fully to our cus­tomers.

‘The ship is a plat­form and we have the flex­i­bil­ity to add to it. We think Da­men are achiev­ing the wow fac­tor.’

“Aqua­cul­ture is grow­ing and we’d in­volve­ment” like more

More wow fac­tor comes from Ferguson Marine Engi­neer­ing, based on the Clyde.

At the show the com­pany was fo­cus­ing on its new VR (vir­tual re­al­ity) head­sets, which cus­tomers can use to ‘walk around’ a 3d vi­su­al­i­sa­tion of a ves­sel.

For prospec­tive new builds this helps po­ten­tial buy­ers de­cide on any al­ter­ations, from the sit­ing of deck equip­ment down to win­dow sizes, so that all builds are unique and one-offs.

The com­pany is cur­rently work­ing on a 21m ves­sel, de­signed by Mac­duff Ship De­sign, for In­ver­lussa.

Also work­ing more closely with aqua­cul­ture cus­tomers is Mac­duff Ship­yards. The Banff­shire based yard is build­ing a cata­ma­ran for Scot­tish Sea Farms and con­tin­ues to build up the net clean­ing sec­tor of its busi­ness.

Mest Ship­yard is a mod­ern ship­yard in the Faroe Is­lands. It ser­vices and re­pairs ves­sels built in Nor­way or Den­mark from a po­si­tion in the North Sea that means less travel and cost.

Halfway between Scot­land and Ice­land, Mest has a 115m dry dock and fjords with vir­tu­ally no tides and sees its ship­yard as ‘the best kept se­cret in the North Sea’.

Equip­ment sup­pli­ers also fea­tured well

JC Hy­draulics, based in Peter­head, is a re­pairer but also an agent for BOPP deck equip­ment, giv­ing JC a sig­nif­i­cant pres­ence with new boat builds. A new con­tract was signed at the show and more are ‘close to sign­ing’.

Global Em­pire Hy­draulic Con­nec­tions from Cork came to Skipper Expo with an in­ge­nious prod­uct launched six months ago.

The King Cou­pling is a quick-fix so­lu­tion for hy­draulic hoses and burst hy­draulic pipes. In­stead of los­ing half a day to fix the prob­lem, down time is re­duced as ma­chin­ery can be up and run­ning again within half an hour.

The ports and har­bours of Scot­land again had a big pres­ence at the show, with Ler­wick, Scal­loway, Peter­head, Fraser­burgh and Scrab­ster, plus Shetland

Seafood Auc­tions, all talk­ing of re­cent de­vel­op­ments or plans for the fu­ture.

On the Aberdeen­shire Coun­cil stand, the ports and har­bours of the county were rep­re­sented as well as KIMO, the body work­ing to pro­tect and en­hance the marine en­vi­ron­ment.

Many ves­sels are in­volved with the scheme which re­sulted in more than 200 tonnes of rub­bish be­ing taken from Scot­tish waters last year and now to­talling of over 1,400 tonnes since the scheme be­gan in 2005.

And both Seafish and the Scot­tish Mar­itime Academy in Peter­head were there to pub­li­cise the im­por­tance of the mar­itime, fish­ing and aqua­cul­ture cour­ses they or­gan­ise, in­clud­ing health and safety, sea sur­vival, deck­hands and engi­neer­ing.

One of the largest stands was from Nor­way - MMG (Maloy Mar­itime Group), un­der whose ban­ner some 16 com­pa­nies ex­hib­ited, cov­er­ing ship­yard and port ser­vices, fish­ing gear and gen­eral sup­plies, tech­ni­cal equip­ment, de­sign and engi­neer­ing.

From the group, three com­pa­nies in par­tic­u­lar - Baat­bygg, Sel­stad and MH Ser­vice work within aqua­cul­ture.

The Fri­day of the two-day show co­in­cided with Nor­way’s Na­tional Day. Ev­ery Nor­we­gian there was, of course, more than happy to be in an ex­hi­bi­tion cen­tre in Aberdeen rather than be­ing at home on hol­i­day!

And the cakes and cham­pagne they pro­vided and shared helped non Nor­we­gians cel­e­brate the day too.

Above: Busiest ever show (photo: Skipper Expo); JC Hy­draulics; Swan Net Gundry/SNG Aqua. Op­po­site: Da­men Ship­yards (top); Fisa of Peru.

Above: Pro­tec­tive cloth­ing from Guy Cot­ten. Left: Ferguson Marine Engi­neer­ing; Mac­duff Ship­yards. (Pho­tos: Scott Binnie)

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