Antibiotics and pesticides used in live stock farming and tax related to salmon farming: EIR release
- Marine Scotland Directorate
- Part of
- Farming and rural, Public sector
Information request and response under the Environmental Information (Scotland) Regulations 2004.
The following information for Scotland covering the period 3 March 2017 to 3 March 2022 on the:
Chicken and pig rearing industry
a) Data on the quantity of use of antibiotics and/or pesticides (by any authority) over the last 5 year.
b) Loans or grants to these industries (intensive production systems i.e. indoor stall production for pigs, and caged broiler and egg production) over the last 5 years.
Salmon farming industry
c) Annual amount paid for leases or licences, regulatory and other fees for the last 5 years.
d) Annual taxes paid by the industry for the last 5 years.
e) Annual business rates paid for the last 5 years.
f) Government costs in industry regulation e.g. SEPA, Marine Scotland, Animal Health, and others.
g) Grants or loans made to the industry over the last 5 years by any governmental organisation.
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.
Response to your request
Chicken and pig rearing industry
(a) The Scottish Government (SG) does not hold this data. Plant Protection Products (PPPs), including pesticides policy, is a devolved area, however, functions relating to PPPs are delegated to the Health and Safety Executive (HSE) to carry out on behalf of the Scottish Government. More information can be obtained from the HSE at Queen Elizabeth House, 1 Sibbald Walk, Edinburgh, EH8 8FT, or via: Ways to contact HSE. An exception under regulation 10(4) (a) of the EIRs (information not held) applies to this information, as detailed in Annex A below.
For background, pharmaceutical companies have reported the quantity of authorised veterinary antibiotics sold throughout the UK to the Veterinary Medicines Directorate (VMD) since 1993; and this has been a statutory requirement since 2005 (under the Veterinary Medicines Regulations). This information is published in the VMD’s annual Veterinary Antimicrobial Resistance Surveillance and Sales (UK-VARSS) report, since 2014, and the latest report (2020 can be found at UK Veterinary Antibiotic Resistance and Sales Surveillance Report (publishing.service.gov.uk).The data reported do not take into account wastage, imports or exports of veterinary antibiotics, but they serve as the best currently available approximation of the quantity of antibiotics administered to all animal species, including pigs and poultry within the UK. Many antibiotics are authorised for use in multiple animal species, so it is not possible to determine from sales data how much is used per species.
However, the Veterinary Medicines Regulations require medicines, including antibiotics, to be recorded when administered to food-producing species. The UK-VARSS report captures data relating to antibiotic usage in the pig and poultry sector on an aggregated UK basis, based on data returned by producers to levy boards/industry representative bodies.
The SG is working with Defra and the other devolved administrations in collaboration with the VMD to develop, facilitate and coordinate antibiotic usage data collection systems, including for Scotlandspecific data, in conjunction with livestock sectors.
(b) The SG does not hold data which would allow us to identify rural businesses which have intensive production systems such as indoor stall production for pigs, and caged broiler and egg production, and so is unable to provide details of any loans or grants paid. An exception under regulation 10(4) (a) of the EIRs (information not held) applies to this information, as detailed in Annex A below.
Salmon farming industry
(c) The SG does not hold this data as the standard information recorded on Marine licence application fees does not include the details you request. Regarding wellboat licence fees (previously dealt with by Marine Scotland, now the responsibility of SEPA since 2020), again, details are not recorded in a way that would enable Marine Scotland to provide accurate data. However, information on current fees for General Licensable Activities can be found at Marine licence application fees (1 April 2020 - 31 March 2021) - gov.scot (www.gov.scot).
For more information on the following, you may wish to contact the relevant organisations directly:
- Crown Estate leases: FreedomofInformation@crownestatescotland.com
- Local authority planning permissions: Local Government and Councils in Scotland and the UK, Aberdeen, Glasgow, Dundee, Edinburgh, City (scottishlaw.org.uk)
- SEPA wellboat licences: Contact | Scottish Environment Protection Agency (SEPA)
An exception under regulation 10(4) (a) of the EIRs (information not held) applies to this information, as detailed in Annex A below.
(d) This information is publicly available from the Marine Scotland commissioned report 'Estimation of the Wider Economic Impacts of the Aquaculture Sector in Scotland', at: https://www.gov.scot/publications/estimation-wider-economic-impacts-aquaculture-sector-scotland/. If required, additional information can be obtained from Companies House which holds accounts for individual salmon producers showing their corporate tax contributions.
Some estimated data on taxes by industry sector is published through the Scottish Annual Business Statistics (SABS), including for 2013-2018 (latest data available). However, this does not cover corporation tax, national insurance, and income tax, and the breakdowns provided do not isolate salmon farming but group ‘Fishing and Aquaculture’ together.
Further information can also be obtained from the study Research by BiGGAR Economics compiled on behalf of the SG estimates direct, indirect, and wider economic impacts of the Scottish aquaculture sector for 2018, including associated tax receipts. Chapter 7 (Fiscal Impacts) estimates the following for salmon producers in 2018:
- £42.5 million contributed in Corporation Tax
- £9.6 million contributed in Income Tax
- £13.7 million contributed in National Insurance (employees’ and employer’s contributions combined)
An exception under regulation 6(1) (b) of the EIRs (information already publicly available) applies to this information, as detailed in Annex A below.
(e) The SG does not hold business rate information for the salmon farming industry. There is a rating exemption in Scotland for all fish farms under section 32 of the Local Government, Planning and Land Act 1980 which also exempts any land and buildings solely related to the activity of fish farming, including salmon farming. This means that no rates will have been paid in the last 5 years. There may be some properties which are not solely used for this activity which might be liable for rates, but this information is not held by the SG. An exception under regulation 10(4) (a) of the EIRs (information not held) applies to this information, as detailed in Annex A below.
(f) The SG does not hold this data, as costs of regulation for individual sectors are not recorded separately. An exception under regulation 10(4) (a) of the EIRs (information not held) applies to this information, as detailed in Annex A below.
(g) The table below shows the grant awards made to the salmon farming industry by the SG in the last 5 years:
|Marine Fund Scotland 2021/22|
|Risk & Policy Analysts Ltd||Scottish Aquaculture Seafood Supply Chain Cluster Organisation||47,897.50|
|Pulsea Ltd||Developing a safe and effective sea lice treatment for gill compromised fish||198,573.81|
|The University of Dundee||Experiments & computations of wave and current interaction with offshore fish pens||79,397.00|
|Sustainable Aquaculture Innovation Centre||Environmental DNA metabarcoding: an alternative to macrobenthics in fish-farm compliance assessments||186,956.43|
|Scottish Salmon Company||Applecross RAS Hatchery facility development||2,000,000.00|
|Marine and Fisheries Fund 2019/21|
|Scottish Aquaculture Innovation Centre||Innovations for sustainable Finfish Aquaculture Growth (fish health assessment)||55,000.00|
|Scottish Quality Salmon (SQS) Ltd||SQS Label Rouge - Market Turnaround||234,537.00|
|European Maritime & Fisheries Fund (awarded March 2017-2020)|
|NAFC Marine Centre||Forklift training provision for aquaculture industry||9,550.00|
|Highland Salmon Company Ltd||Modernisation of Hatching Equipment||33,435.00|
|SSQC Ltd||Aquaculture Professional Training Development Service||46,000.00|
|Scottish Aquaculture Innovation Centre||Driving sustainability & increasing
capacity for Scottish Aquaculture
Grant awards are also published at: www.gov.scot/policies/marine-and-fisheries-grants/grants-awarded/. This is updated periodically, so some of the newer awards may not yet be listed on the webpage, but are listed above.
The SG does not hold data relating to grants and loans made by other organisations, however, previous related FOI responses contain links which may assist you to source this information:
- FOI/2020/00100758: Scottish fishing farm industry financial support: EIR release - gov.scot (www.gov.scot)
- FOI/2021/00184149: Scottish Salmon Industry - EIR release - gov.scot (www.gov.scot)
Exceptions under regulations 10(4) (a) (information not held) and 6(1) (b) (information publicly available) of the EIRs apply to this information, as detailed in Annex A below.
REASONS FOR NOT PROVIDING INFORMATION
Regulation 6(1) (b) - information already publicly available
Under the terms of the exception at regulation 6(1) (b) of the EIRs, we do not have to give you information which is already publicly available and easily accessible to you in another form or format. If you do not have internet access to obtain this information from the links to website in this letter, please contact me again and I will send you a paper copy.
This exception 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 exception. We have found that, on balance, the public interest lies in favour of upholding the exception, as the information is already publicly available.
Regulation 10(4) (a) – information not held
Under the terms of the exception at regulation 10(4) (a) of the EIRs (information not held), the Scottish Government is not required to provide information which it does not have. The Scottish Government does not have some of the information you have asked for which is held by the Health and Safety Executive.
This exception 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 exception. We have found that, on balance, the public interest lies in favour of upholding the exception. While we recognise that there may be some public interest in the information requested, clearly we cannot provide information which we do not hold.
The Scottish Government is committed to publishing all information released in response to Freedom of Information requests. View all FOI responses at http://www.gov.scot/foi-responses.
Please quote the FOI reference
Central Enquiry Unit
Phone: 0300 244 4000
The Scottish Government
St Andrews House
There is a problem
Thanks for your feedback