Another award for Bakkafrost’s Native Hebridean

Bakkafrost Scotland Managing Director Iain Laister (2nd from left) with Su Cox receiving the company’s Primary Producer of the Year award at the 
Highlands and Islands Food and Drink Awards, 2023.

Salmon producer Bakkafrost Scotland has picked up another award for its Native Hebridean Salmon.

The company was declared Primary Producer of the Year at the Highlands and Islands Food & Drink Awards 2023, held in Inverness last Friday night at the Kingsmills Hotel.

Bakkafrost’s Native Hebridean product has won numerous awards over the past few years, including wins in two categories at the Scotland Food & Drink Awards 2022 and Best New Foodservice product in the 2022 Seafood Excellence Awards, at Seafood Expo North America.

Ian Laister, managing director, Bakkafrost Scotland commented: “We’re engaged in every stage of the value chain, from Broodstock, through freshwater to rearing in Scottish seas, helping create and retain value in the local economy and maintain control of quality standards. Bakkafrost Scotland also has a significant investment plan in Scotland to extend our value chain to ensure sustainable growth.

“Our globally unique strain, Native Hebridean, is of pure island heritage and bred from wild stock – the story behind it, and its artisan production process, epitomises sustainable salmon production.

“The award is a real testament to our team, the people who are essential to the success of our business, and who ensure our products meet the highest possible standards every day.”

The Primary Producer of the Year awards was sponsored by Salmon Scotland.

The evening also included an address from Gilpin Bradley, last year’s Highlands and Islands Food & Drink Ambassador.

Overall the awards celebrated the talent, quality and diversity across food, drink and hospitality in the Highlands and Islands. A total of 15 award categories recognised a range of diverse businesses from best products to food and drink experiences and outstanding retailers.

The list of winners ranged from a stand out restaurant in Nairn and a distillery on North Uist; to a food centre in Lochcarron and a cheesemaker on Mull, with organisations as large as Shetland Island Council and as small as Inverness street food operator, Tagliotello.

The Young Ambassador award went jointly to Ciara Bow, Gledfield Distillery, Tain, Caithness and Ross-shire, and Finlay MacDonald, Chocolates of Glenshiel, Lochaber, while the Ambassador of the Year award was won by Yvonne and Mike Crook, Good Highland Food, Tomatin, Inverness-shire.

Chair of the judging panel, Elaine Jamieson, Head of Food and Drink and Life Sciences at Highlands and Islands Enterprise (HIE), said: “This year we’ve had more entries than ever before, giving our judges a difficult job. The level of innovation, expertise and quality of our entries never ceases to amaze me and I feel incredibly grateful that the Highlands and Islands Food & Drink Awards gives us the opportunity to celebrate the amazing work that is being done within the sector.”

Gilpin Bradley at the Highlands and Islands Food and Drink Awards, 2023.

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