2. Atlantic Salmon (Salmo salar) - OVA and Smolts
Production survey information was collected from all 24 companies actively involved in the freshwater production of Atlantic salmon, farming 71 active sites. This figure represents the entire freshwater industry operating in Scotland.
Company and Site Data
Table 12: Number of companies and sites in production during 2009-2018
|Year||No. of companies||No. of sites|
In 2018 the number of companies authorised by the Scottish Government for freshwater production of Atlantic salmon remained at 24. A total of 71 sites were actively engaged in commercial production, a decrease of eight from the 2017 figure.
Production and Staffing
Table 13: Number (000’s) of smolts produced, staff employed and smolt productivity during 2009-2018
|Year||Number (000’s) of Smolts produced||Full-time Male||Full-time Female||Total Full-time||Part-time Male||Part-time Female||Total Part-time||Total Staff||Productivity, 000’s smolts per person</th§>|
Smolt production in 2018 increased by 2% compared to 2017. The number of staff employed in 2018 decreased by 13 and productivity increased by 6.8% to a figure of 169,400 smolts produced per person. Data for staffing and productivity in 2013 are shown, however, there are uncertainties with these data due to consolidation within the industry.
Smolts by Age Group
Table 14: Number of smolts (000’s) produced by type during 2009-2018
In 2018, there was an increase (27.4%) in the number of S1 smolts produced but a decrease (14.3%) in the number of S½ smolts produced. There was no production of S1½ smolts in 2018 and no S2 smolts produced since 2006.
Table 15: Number and capacity of production systems during 2014-2018
|System||No. of sites with system||Total capacity, 000’s cubic metres|
|Tanks and Raceways||55||49||49||43||44||65||47||46||55||54|
The principal types of facility used for the production of smolts in freshwater are cages or tanks and raceways. In 2018, the number of farms using cages decreased by nine and the number of farms using tanks and raceways increased by one. In terms of volume, cage capacity decreased by 11,000 m³ and tank and raceway capacity decreased by 1,000 m³. This resulted in a net decrease in volume of 12,000 m³ available for the production of smolts in Scotland during 2018.
Table 16: Number (000’s) of smolts produced and stocking densities by production system during 2014-2018
|Number of smolts produced (000’s)||Stocking densities (smolts/m³)|
The average stocking densities of cages increased from 48 to 63 smolts per m³ in 2018 compared to 2017, while densities in tanks and raceways decreased from 526 to 469 smolts per m³.
Table 17: Number (000’s) of salmon ova produced during 2009-2018
|No. of ova||91,964||91,655||78,208||57,489||56,904||33,450||11,605||13,689||12,631||15,228|
In 2018, 15.2 million ova were stripped, an increase of 21% from the number of ova produced in 2017.
Table 18: Source, number (000’s), previous year’s estimate of ova laid down to hatch during 2009-2018 and projection for 2019
|Year||In-house broodstock||Out-sourced GB broodstock||GB wild broodstock||Foreign ova||Total||Previous year's estimate|
The number of ova laid down to hatch was 70.5 million, an increase of 4.7 million (7.2%) on the 2017 figure. The majority of the ova (87.3%) were derived from foreign sources, this being an increase of 2.3 million (4.0%) on the 2017 figure. Supplies derived from GB broodstock increased by 2.4 million, a 36.3% increase on the 2017 figure. No ova from GB wild broodstock were laid down in 2018, however, in previous years the ova derived from wild stocks were generally held and hatched for wild stock enhancement by the aquaculture industry in cooperation with wild fisheries managers.
Smolts Produced and Put to Sea
Table 19: Actual and projected smolt production and smolts put to sea (millions) during 2009-2020
|Actual smolts put to sea||38.5||38.5||42.7||41.1||40.9||48.1||45.5||43.0||46.1||45.4|
|Ratio of ova laid down to smolts produced||1.8||1.9||1.5||1.4||1.6||1.6||1.5||1.5||1.4||1.5|
The figure for the number of smolts put to sea includes smolts produced in England and smolts imported from elsewhere, whereas smolt production data relate only to those produced in Scotland. Smolt producers estimate putting 38.6 million smolts to sea in 2019. The ratio of ova laid down to hatch to smolts produced in 2018 was greater than the ratio in 2017.
Scale of Production
Table 20: Smolt-producing sites grouped by numbers (000’s) of smolts produced during 2009‑2018
|Year||Scale of production||No. of sites in production||Total smolts produced|
Note: These data refer only to sites producing smolts. The sites holding only ova, fry or parr are excluded.
The number of sites producing smolts in 2018 was 42. The number of sites producing less than 101,000 smolts has decreased by two and there has also been a decrease of three in the number of sites producing in excess of one million smolts per year. The number of sites producing between 101,000 and one million smolts per year increased by two.
Production of Ova and Smolt by Production Area
Table 21: Staffing in 2018, ova laid down to hatch in 2017-2018, smolt production in 2017-2018 and estimated production in 2019-2020 by region
|Region||Number of staff employed in 2018||Ova laid down to hatch (000’s)||Smolt production (000’s)||Estimated smolt production (000’s)|
|East and South||6||3||0||42||1,192||762||724||733|
In 2018, the North West and the West were the main areas where ova were laid down to hatch. The North West and the West were the main smolt producing areas. The greatest number of staff were employed in the North West region.
Figure 2: The distribution of active Atlantic salmon smolt sites in 2018
International Trade in Ova
Since the introduction of the EU single market on 1st January 1993 and the associated Fish Health Regulations common to all EU member states, a trade in live salmon and ova has been established. In addition, the European Economic Area (EEA) agreement allows trade between the EU and the member states of the European Free Trade Association (EFTA). Trade is based on the same rules as are established within the EU regarding compartments and zones declared free from listed diseases.
Trade with Third Countries has also been established, but only from sites that have met the same health standards as are established within the EU regarding the approval of farms and zones for listed diseases. Exports to countries outside the EU are subject to the health conditions placed by the importing country. Marine Scotland Science advises potential exporters to ascertain with the importing country any specific health testing requirements that may be a condition of import.
Imports and Exports
Table 22a: Source and number (000’s) of salmon ova, fry, parr and smolts imported during 2009-2018 derived from health certificates
|Import year||Ova||Fry, Parr and Smolts|
|EU Member States||EFTA||Total||EU Member States||EFTA - Norway|
The numbers of ova imported increased by 13.6%. The number of fry, parr and smolts imported decreased from that observed in 2017, with just 1.7 million fry, parr and smolts imported from EU member states. There have been no imports from Third Countries such as the USA since 2005.
Table 22b: Destination and number (000’s) of salmon ova, fry, parr and smolts exported during 2009-2018 derived from health certificates
|Export year||Farmed origin ova||Total||Fry, Parr and Smolts|
In 2018, 23,000 ova were exported. Fry, parr and smolt exports decreased by 135,000 fish on the 2017 figure.
Table 23: Number of sites using vaccines and number (millions) of fish vaccinated during 2009-2018
|No. of sites||68||70||67||63||63||56||55||47||46||43|
|No. of fish (millions) vaccinated||39.6||42.6||49.2||48.1||47.5||44.7||48.0||42.6||58.4||51.0|
Vaccines were used to provide protection against furunculosis, infectious pancreatic necrosis (IPN), ERM, vibriosis and salmonid alphavirus (SAV). The majority of fish were vaccinated against furunculosis and IPN, with smaller numbers of fish being vaccinated against ERM, vibriosis and SAV. A total of 51.0 million fish were vaccinated across 43 sites.
There were no escape incidents reported from sites rearing freshwater Atlantic salmon during 2018.
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