Scottish Shellfish Farm Production Survey 2021

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

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  • In 2021, 8,590 tonnes of mussels were produced for the table market, this is the highest level of mussel production recorded in Scotland;
  • Mussel and Pacific oyster remain the main species produced in terms of value and tonnage. Mussel production increased by 52% and Pacific oyster production increased by 70% during 2021;
  • During 2021, over 3.5 million Pacific oyster shells were produced for on-growing;
  • There was a very small amount of queen scallop production during 2021 with the biggest producer reporting no production due to the COVID-19 pandemic. There was an increase in scallop production, from 19,000 to 27,000 shells, since 2020;
  • There was a decrease in the production of native oyster from 35,000 to 8,000 shells in 2021.
  • The number of mussel producing sites with sufficient spat settlement for production purposes increased from 48 to 58.
  • Employment levels increased by 1% from the previous year, with 303 full, part-time and casual staff being employed during 2021.
  • The Scottish shellfish farming industry is estimated to be worth approximately £9.8 million at first sale value, an increase of 61% on the 2020 figure.
  • Active surveillance for bonamiasis, marteiliasis and OsHV-1 µvar continued in 2021;
  • For shellfish health purposes, 37 out of 309 sites were inspected during 2021 as part of a risk based surveillance programme. Further details can be found at Fish Health Inspectorate;
  • Movement restrictions remain in place for the presence of Bonamia ostreae at Loch Sunart and the Dornoch Firth in Highland region, West Loch Tarbert and Lynn of Lorne, Loch Creran and Loch Etive in Strathclyde region;
  • Great Britain maintained disease free status with regard to bonamiasis, marteiliasis and OsHV-1 µvar, with the exception of specific compartments under movement restrictions. Immediate notification of increased mortality on farm sites must be reported to Marine Scotland Science, Fish Health Inspectorate (see Contact details).



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