Mortalities and diseases at Marine Harvest fish farms: EIR release

Information request and response under the Environmental Information (Scotland) Regulations 2004.

FOI reference: FOI/17/02772
Date received: 14 November 2017
Date responded: 13 Decemeber 2017

Information requested

You asked for information on mortalities and diseases at Marine Harvest fish farms during 2017, to include emails and correspondence with Marine Harvest on the issue of mortalities and diseases - including Mortality Event Reports, Marine Laboratory inspection reports, warning letters and other information since 1 January 2017.


As the information you have requested is 'environmental information' for the purposes of the Environmental Information (Scotland) Regulations 2004 (EIRs), we are required to deal with your request under those Regulations. We are applying the exemption at section 39(2) of the Freedom of Information (Scotland) Act 2002 (FOISA), so that we do not also have to deal with your request under FOISA.

This exemption is subject to the 'public interest test'. Therefore, taking account of all the circumstances of this case, we have considered if the public interest in disclosing the information outweighs the public interest in applying the exemption. We have found that, on balance, the public interest lies in favour of upholding the exemption, because there is no public interest in dealing with the same request under two different regimes. This is essentially a technical point and has no material effect on the outcome of your request.

Please find enclosed a copy of the information requested. This includes an excel spreadsheet of mortality reports and some email correspondence concerning mortalities and disease in connection with Marine Harvest.

In addition to the above, and the attached information, I should also inform you that two Marine Harvest sites (Gorsten FS0237 and Torridon FS0234) had movement restrictions revoked for Bacterial Kidney Disease (BKD), following satisfactory cleaning, disinfection and fallowing in 2017. This followed the placing of these movement restrictions after confirmation of BKD on both sites in 2016.

You may also find some additional information through Marine Scotland's Fish Health Inspectorate's active publication plan. This involves the publication of case information relating to aquatic animal health surveillance in Scotland. Information is published on a quarterly basis, three months in arrears: Marine Scotland's Fish Health Inspectorate

Responses to other requests for information are published on the Scottish Government website and these may contain further information which is useful to your request: Publications

Please be aware that Marine Scotland does not hold a comprehensive data set of mortalities or disease issues in relation to fish farms within Scotland.

You will note that a small amount of information has been redacted from that supplied. An exception under Regulation 11(2) (personal data) of the EIRs applies to that information. The reasons why the exception applies are explained below.

Reasons for not providing information

An exception applies:

An exception under regulation 11(2) of the EIRs (personal information) applies to a small amount of the information requested because it is personal data of a third party and disclosing it would contravene the data protection principles in Schedule 1 to the Data Protection Act 1998. This exception is not subject to the 'public interest test', so we are not required to consider if the public interest in disclosing the information outweighs the public interest in applying the exception.

About FOI

The Scottish Government is committed to publishing all information released in response to Freedom of Information requests. View all FOI responses at

FOI-17-02772-Marine Harvest Correspondence.pdf


Please quote the FOI reference

Central Enquiry Unit
Phone: 0300 244 4000

The Scottish Government
St Andrew's House
Regent Road

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