Loch Duart has installed the barge on its biggest site at Oldany in Sutherland, as a less labour-intensive means of delivering sustainably sourced feed to the farm’s salmon.
Simon Maguire, financial director at Loch Duart, said: “This investment is part of a strategic programme to continually update our equipment, placing the husbandry and quality of our salmon at the forefront of our farming.
Harness experience and skills
“The new feed barge also means we can harness the experience and skills of our team better by removing some of the manual labour currently needed, while also enabling us to scale up production significantly.”
The purchase formed part of the company’s strategy to emphasise cleaner fish management and husbandry, while maximising efficiencies using the best technology available. The new feed barge also means feed delivery can be maintained during adverse weather conditions.
HSBC UK equipment finance director Marcus Sangster added: “The fishing industries have had a challenging year with Brexit and Covid, and Loch Duart have maintained their operations and global reputation throughout, including through significant investment.
“We’re delighted to be able to continue to provide support as an important next step of its international growth plan.”
Established more than 20 years ago, Loch Duart produces salmon that is exported across the world. It was one of the first salmon producers to be RSPCA assured and was highlighted as one of London Stock exchange Group’s 1,000 companies to inspire Britain.
Meanwhile, Anglesey-based Mona Island Dairy is to create 100 new jobs as part of a £20m investment into a new cheese factory at its existing facility – supported by a £3m grant from the Business Innovation and Tourism Escalator Scheme.
Managing director Ronald Akkerman said the new factory will see turnover rise to £25m by 2022 and set new standards for the industry, boosted by the manufacturer’s plans to blend innovative and traditional methods to create Cheddar, Gouda, Edam and a range of artisan cheeses.