Scottish salmon exports to Asia double in Q1
Scottish salmon exports to Asia have more than doubled to £24m in response to growing demand, new HMRC figures show.
European destinations continue to dominate as the main international market for Scottish farmed salmon.
However, North America and Asia accounted for nearly half (47%) of all sales in the first three months of this year, driven by strong demand from China, Taiwan, Singapore, and South Korea.
The value of exports to the region has soared by £12m, accompanied by a 97% increase in the volume of fish transported.
Trade body Salmon Scotland said the figures show that farm-raised salmon “generates vital income for the country”.
Fresh, whole Scottish salmon export sales between January and March reached £134 million, an 18 per cent increase from the same period in 2022.
The EU remained the dominant market, with over half of the sales, followed by North America (29 per cent) and Asia (18 per cent).
Further analysis indicates China and Taiwan individually added a combined £12m market value growth in the period.
Singapore and South Korea also performed well, contributing significantly towards 1,900 tonnes of fish transported to Asia.
Salmon Scotland said there were further opportunities for growth in North America and Asia due to rising consumer demand and ongoing efforts to reduce trade barriers.
The trade body also recently unveiled an ambitious growth plan for Scotland’s premium “Label Rouge” salmon to target European markets, aiming to increase its share to 15 per cent by 2026.
With streamlined reform, further sustainable growth for Scotland’s rural communities is achievable, the trade body said. creating more high-paid, high-skilled local jobs.
Tavish Scott, chief executive of Salmon Scotland, said: “This demonstrates the extraordinary global success story of Scottish salmon which we can all be immensely proud of, and we are all benefitting from through thousands of jobs and hundreds of millions of pounds for the economy.
“The increasing demand for Scottish salmon in Asia is a clear testament to its outstanding quality and taste.
“We are delighted that our farm-raised salmon is recognised as the world’s best and in high demand internationally.
“The remarkable growth of the Asian market, along with other regions, underscores the immense potential and opportunities for Scottish salmon.
“Given the critical importance of revenue generation by our farmers, particularly during the cost-of-living crisis, it is crucial for the Scottish Government to reconsider HPMA [Highly Protected Marine Areas] proposals.
“By doing so, we can fully unleash the potential of the sustainable blue economy, creating even greater benefits for coastal communities and turbocharging job creation.”
UK Government Minister for Scotland and Exports, Malcolm Offord said: “The high-quality salmon that we have here in Scotland is already popular across the globe, and these figures show that this demand is growing.
“It’s important that we make the most of the opportunities in markets such as Asia, and maximise the potential for Scottish salmon.
“That’s why the UK Government is working tirelessly to reduce trade barriers internationally so that these exports figures can continue to grow.”