Fish Farming Statement: Herald Newspaper

Fish Farming Statement

The Scottish Gamekeepers Association has today been one of the many signatories to an advert in the Herald newspaper regarding salmon farming in Scotland.

The Scottish Gamekeepers Association, which has its own stand-alone group, the SGA Fishing Group, respects and acknowledges the importance of jobs in remote rural communities.

The SGA Fishing Group acknowledges that salmon farming in Scotland sustains employment in fragile areas.

The SGA Fishing Group acknowledges, however, that salmon farming impacts have had a detrimental impact on wild fisheries interests, and continues to do so.

The SGA Fishing Group has campaigned against mass escapes from Scottish farms and sea lice infestations which are beyond the industry’s own safe limits. Sea lice undoubtedly impact the survival of declining salmon and sea trout. This is of grave concern to us and our members.

Without appropriate action- and true will- from Scottish Government, this will only continue to the detriment of an iconic species and to the interests of ghillies working at the sharp end in the wild fishery sector which, itself, is a major employer in fragile rural areas and brings visitors from all over the world.

While the SGA Fishing Group does not necessarily buy in to every single aspect of the message contained within the advert, we unify behind a need for renewed urgency and action.

Scottish Government has failed to act with any decisiveness on 2 Parliamentary Committee inquiries which found many problems with salmon farming, in its present form.

Since then, (3 years later) progress has been so slow as to call into question whether there is truly a will within Scottish Government to carry out the cross-party wishes of the Scottish Parliament.

For this reason, the SGA added its logo to the advert, on behalf of the SGA Fishing Group, and thanks Salmon and Trout Conservation Scotland for the invitation to do so.

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