Scots seafood firms fly the flag in Japan

SCOTLAND’S biggest seafood companies are in Tokyo this week to help promote international exports, which rose 23 per cent last year to £944 million.
Salmon farmers such as Marine Harvest and the Scottish Salmon Company are attending the Japan Seafood Expo 2018, which runs from August 22-24.
The firms represent the largest Scottish delegation yet and include trout farmer Dawnfresh, making an appearance at the show for the first time.
Darren Allan, international commercial manager at Dawnfresh, said: ‘Asia, and in particular Japan, is one of the largest consumers of seafood in the world, appreciating high quality, sustainable products.
‘Scottish fish is widely renowned as some of the best in the world for both quality and flavour. As one of Scotland’s most premium, fully accredited seafood producers, we see the show as an excellent opportunity to showcase our fantastic range of raw and smoked trout products as well as our handcrafted, marinated, MSC certified herring.’
The Japan Seafood Expo 2018 is expected to attract 35,000 visitors, among them many international trade buyers, wholesalers, distributors, retailers and restaurateurs.
The Scottish contingent will showcase a wide range of Scottish species and techniques, such as Scottish smoked and fresh salmon, haddock, sea trout, mackerel, herring, crab and langoustine.
Another first time exhibitor is Scotland’s biggest salmon farmer, Marine Harvest, and the company’s account manager, Robbie Kettle, said they were looking forward to meeting existing and new customers in Tokyo.
‘Our pristine, clear, cold waters are the perfect environment to rear our world class Scottish salmon, befitting for the high quality Japanese market and the discerning Japanese consumer,’ he said.
Others attending are: Hebridean Smokehouse; Denholm Seafoods; Lunar; the Scottish Fishermen’s Organisation; the Crab Company Scotland; and Northbay Pelagic.
The Scottish delegation is hoping its collective presence will enhance the ‘buy Scottish’ message in Asian markets.
The Japan export support programme delivered by Seafood Scotland and Scottish Development International has made a significant difference by educating trade buyers and engaging in activities such as the Japan Seafood Expo.
Fish and seafood exports to Japan from Scotland have increased by 24 per cent in the last two years, from £3.7 million in 2015 to £4.6 million in 2017.
Natalie Bell, trade marketing manager for Europe, Middle East and Asia at Seafood Scotland, said: ‘Japan is a strategically important market for the seafood industry. Its famously strong fish eating culture and a market that demands increasing levels of quality, traceability and sustainability, makes Japan an ideal match for Scottish seafood is the ideal match for the market.
‘Moreover, where Japan leads the rest of Asia generally follows. As the cultural and foodie trend setter for the region, buy-in from Japan is crucial for Scottish fishermen and producers.
‘The Japan Seafood Expo represents a critical opportunity for Scottish company representatives, who will do solid deals over tastings and dinners, contributing to a real boost for the Scottish industry.’
Both Scottish and Japanese chefs will be working with the delegation to prepare their products in western culinary styles, but also to demonstrate how Scottish products can be used for more traditional Japanese cuisine.
The Scottish contingent is also hosting a Taste of Scotland Seafood reception at the British Embassy in Tokyo.
Picture: The Scottish Salmon Company’s sushi