Scottish Fish Farm Production Survey 2019

This report is based on the returns of an annual survey questionnaire sent to all active authorised fish farming businesses in Scotland during 2019. Statistics on employment, production and value are presented.

This document is part of a collection

Executive Summary

The tables below summarise the results from the 2019 fish farms annual production survey (slight difference in these summary figures from figures in the main report are due to rounding).

Rainbow Trout ( Oncorhynchus mykiss)
2018 2019
Total production (tonnes) 6,413 7,405
Production for the table (tonnes) 5,874 6,906
Production for restocking (tonnes) 539 499
Number of staff employed 136 144
Mean productivity (tonnes/person) 47.2 51.4
Number of ova laid down to hatch (millions) 6.3 6.6
Number of ova imported (millions) 5.8 6.5

In 2019, the production of rainbow trout increased by 992 tonnes. Employment increased by eight staff and mean productivity increased to 51.4 tonnes per person. The number of ova laid down to hatch increased by 0.3 million and the number of ova imported increased by 0.7 million.

Atlantic Salmon ( Salmo salar)
Ova and Smolts
2018 2019
Number of ova produced (millions) 15.2 11.6
Number of ova laid down to hatch (millions) 70.5 71.2
Number of ova exported (millions) 0.02 0
Number of ova imported (millions) 65.8 60.2
Number of smolts produced (millions) 47.1 51.4
Number of smolts put to sea (millions) 45.4 53.0
Number of staff employed 278 281
Mean productivity (000’s smolts/person) 169.4 183.0

The production of ova decreased by 3.6 million in 2019 and the number of ova laid down to hatch increased by 0.7 million. No ova were exported in 2019 and the number of ova imported decreased by 5.6 million from the 2018 figure. The number of smolts produced increased by 4.3 million. In 2019 the number of staff employed increased by three and mean productivity increased by 13,600 smolts per person.

Production fish
2018 2019
Total production (tonnes) 156,025 203,881
Production of 0-year fish (tonnes) 247 931
Production of grilse (tonnes) 53,244 72,243
Production of pre-salmon (tonnes) 57,310 59,847
Production of year 2 salmon (tonnes) 45,224 70,860
Mean fish weight 0-year (kg) 2.9 2.9
Mean fish weight grilse (kg) 4.9 5.0
Mean fish weight pre-salmon (kg) 5.2 5.1
Mean fish weight year 2 salmon (kg) 6.3 5.8
Number of staff employed 1,466 1,651
Mean productivity tonnes/person 106.4 123.5

Production tonnage increased by 47,856 tonnes with an increase in the mean harvest weight of grilse but a decrease in the mean weight of pre-salmon and year 2 salmon. Staff numbers increased by 185 and mean productivity increased to 123.5 tonnes per person.

Smolt survival (percentage harvested)
Survival (%) Years 0+1 Year 2 Total
2016 input year class 59.9 16.7 76.6
2017 input year class 47.3 26.5 73.8

The smolt survival rate for the 2017 input year class decreased to 73.8%. Mortality is included in the number of fish not harvested for human consumption, which also consists of fish which have escaped, been culled for production reasons, removed for sampling purposes, statutory culls or selected for broodstock production.

Other Species
Including brown/sea trout ( Salmo trutta); halibut ( Hippoglossus
hippoglossus);lumpsucker ( Cyclopterus lumpus) and several species of wrasse( Labridae).
2018 2019
Total production (tonnes) 40a 41a
Number of staff employed (full-time) 45 38
(part-time) 15 15
Number of ova laid down to hatch
38.9b 19.8b
Number of ova imported
1.5 1.3

Some figures are excluded from this report as providing them would reveal production information from an individual company.

aExcluding halibut production.

bExcluding halibut ova laid down to hatch.

In 2019, the production of other species increased by one tonne from the 2018 total, although this figure does not include halibut production. Overall, employment decreased by seven in 2019. There was a decrease in the number of ova laid down to hatch during 2019 and again any halibut ova laid down to hatch were excluded from this figure.

Number of Confirmed Escape Incidents from Fish Farms Notified to the Scottish Government
Species Number of reported incidents which could have led to an escape of farmed fish Number of reported incidents which did lead to an escape of farmed fish Number of
fish escaped
Rainbow trout 0 3 37,372
Atlantic salmon (freshwater stages) 0 1 4,465
Atlantic salmon (seawater stages) 16 3 28,470



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