Mowi said it had identified its sites at Loch Ewe and Loch Duich as “candidates for relocation”.
It also cited their proximity to sensitive wild salmonid habitats as reasons for the move. Mowi said it was seeking “locations more appropriate for modern day aquaculture”. The world’s biggest salmon farming company wants to expand into “new high-energy farming areas located further offshore” as part of a longer term plan.
Mowi, formerly known as Marine Harvest, already operates two such sites off the Isle of Muck and the Isle of Rum. Mowi Scotland managing director Ben Hadfield said it was the company’s ambition to “close contentious locations, jointly working with wild fishery managers”. He said: “Mowi has strived to improve relations with the wild fish sector and has been clear that it will seek to expand its operations in Scotland, whilst securing reduced impact on the environment and further developing the significant economic contribution that it makes to rural Scotland. “In the absence of a regulatory framework that enables relocation of a farm’s biomass, we are wanting to engage with our government, environmental groups and salmon fishery boards to pursue this opportunity.
“The sites will be closed permanently conditional to the support from our regulatory system to transfer the biomass to other locations, and to sustainably expand our production in the best possible areas for salmon farming, thus protecting the associated jobs.” Click here to read more