Temporary issues felt in the seafood supply chain are steadily improving, UK Government Minister for Scotland David Duguid reported, following a meeting he chaired this week with senior figures in the industry.
‘The UK Government has been striving night and day to help the industry and I am encouraged that solutions now in place are beginning to bear fruit,’ he said after the latest meeting of the Scottish Seafood Export Working Group, attended online by the Scottish Seafood Association and Scottish Fishermen’s Federation.
The Minister also spoke with DFDS, the logistics experts who operate the Larkhall hub, through which much of Scotland’s seafood exports pass.
‘It is essential that we know precisely what difficulties are arising so we can tailor solutions. The excellent feedback from DFDS is massively helpful. We are working to streamline systems, while supporting exporters and partners such as DFDS, and the commitment to making the system work is clear across the board,’ he said.
‘The UK Government has acknowledged there have been difficulties and we want to work together to provide solutions and restore confidence within this crucial sector so that world-class Scottish seafood can be harvested at sea and sped from port to plate for customers here and abroad.’
He commented that there are still issues with supply chains, and that he has written to Scottish Government’s Cabinet Secretary for the Rural Economy, Fergus Ewing to encourage take-up of the offer of additional support for Food Standards Scotland at Larkhall and provide further detail of direct support for businesses with the embedding of experts to help firms with paperwork required by the EU.
‘We want a workable, sure-footed system so the industry can maximise the benefits of Britain’s new status as an independent coastal state, outside the Common Fisheries Policy,’ David Duguid said.