Fish Farming Crisis Warning Over EU Plan –

Fish Farming Crisis Warning Over EU Plan Fish Farming Today Published:  08 January, 2003

SCOTLAND’S fish farming industry says it is facing a potential catastrophe if the EU decides to drop price controls on imported salmon next week.

This week the industry heard that the EU is planning to drop its investigation into the dumping of cheap salmon from Chile and Faroe, which it is feared could open the floodgates to a trade war.

It also wants to abandon the minimum price control on Norwegian imports.Salmon farmers in Shetland, who produce the bulk of Scotland’s farmed fish, fear the impact of such a move could break an industry which has been struggling for the past two years.

Such an outcome would be disastrous for the islands which are facing severe cuts in fishing and oil this year.Salmon is now Shetland’s most valuable commodity, bringing in £70 million to the isles every year.

The Shetland Salmon Farmers’ Association is calling for the EU to delay making a final decision on calling its investigation to a halt until the industry can seek legal advice.

SSFA chief executive David Sandison warned: “If it’s going to be a free for all for everyone, it will be a very serious situation indeed.

“We will have to assess where we are in the global supply chain and reassess the whole industry on this side of the world.”

Shetland led the call for the EU to investigate salmon farming companies in Chile and Faroe who have been sending vast quantities of cheap salmon to Europe.