EXPORTS of Scottish farmed salmon for the first six months of this year are up 25 per cent in value on last year’s figures, to £319 million.
And according to figures published today by HMRC, volume has also increased by 25 per cent, to 47,000 tonnes, compared to the same period in 2018.
France was the top market, with sales of £109 million, and the US was in second place, with sales of £97 million.
Overall, the largest trading region remains the EU, with total sales of £153 million. Exports to the EU account for 49 per cent of export value and 52 per cent of the volume.
Trade with Germany and Italy increased by 50 per cent and 72 per cent respectively.
Julie Hesketh-Laird, chief executive of the Scottish Salmon Producers Organisation, said: ‘This is an excellent start to 2019. The underlying international demand for Scottish salmon remains strong, which is hugely encouraging and supports the reputation that our delicious and quality product achieves globally.
‘While France and the USA are still the largest country markets, we are seeing growth in many mature and emerging markets around the globe, from Canada to UAE, which underlines sustainable, growing demand for salmon.
‘This uptick in overseas exports returns Scottish salmon sales to levels we would expect to see, helping secure its reputation in world markets and safeguarding the innovation, investment and valued jobs the industry supports across Scotland.
‘We must not take this growth for granted. It is vital that salmon farmers have the right home environment, in which they can continue to meet the demand from overseas, and that the UK and Scottish governments work together to ensure that easy movement to our biggest market – Europe – remains available as the UK exits the EU.’
After France and the US, the top markets between January and June 2019 were China (£37 million); the Irish Republic (£14 million); and Taiwan (£12 million).
Taiwan was up by 15 per cent and the Japanese market soared by 85 per cent, although sales to China fell by 21 per cent during the first six months of the year.
From January to June 2019, Scottish salmon was exported to 47 countries.