Protect our exports, seafood sector urges Gove

Scottish salmon is the UK's number one food export

REPRESENTATIVES of Scotland’s seafood sector have called on the UK government to do more to protect seafood exports to Europe in the event of a no-deal Brexit.

Members from both the farmed and caught sectors met Environment Secretary Michael Gove in London today to discuss plans following Britain’s withdrawal from the EU, due to take place on October 31.

After the meeting, Jimmy Buchan, for the Scottish Seafood Association, said: ‘Seafood is perishable so it is imperative that no extra barriers are placed in the way of its access to market.

‘We are now hopeful Mr Gove will work with his colleagues across the UK government to make sure access remains as swift and as easy in the future as it is now.’

‘Hamish Macdonell, of the Scottish Salmon Producers Organisation, said: ‘Scottish seafood rightly enjoys an enviable reputation for quality and availability in European markets.

‘As representatives of all seafood sectors, farmed and caught, we made it clear to the UK government that we are determined to ensure this continues, even if the UK leaves the EU without a deal.

‘We held a constructive meeting with Mr Gove and his senior officials and while we appreciate the preparatory work that has been already been undertaken, we believe more has to be done to protect seafood exports to the continent if no Brexit deal is agreed.’

Also attending the Billy McKenzie of the Fishing Vessel Owners and Agents Association, and David Duguid, MP for Banff and Buchan.

Issues discussed included certification, potential transport hold-ups and compensation for extra tariff barriers placed on UK exports to the EU.