News / Girlsta’s new £15m hatchery

Per Greig Jnr cutting the ribbon to officially open the £15.5 million new Girlsta hatchery. Photo: Millgaet Media

A NEW £15.5 million salmon hatchery was officially opened in Girlsta on Saturday afternoon.

Grieg Seafood Hjaltland’s state-of-the-art Millbrook Hatchery, which has created 16 new skilled jobs in Shetland, will produce a total of five million juvenilne salmon every year.

The hatchery employs the latest technology in water recirculation, allowing for the production of high quality juvenile salmon from a much smaller volume of freshwater than is possible using traditional hatchery technology.

The advance means Shetland, which already produces around a third of Scotland’s farmed salmon, now has the potential to become self-sufficient in production of juvenile salmon for the first time.

Grieg Seafood Hjaltland said the investment would reduce the carbon footprint of Shetland-produced salmon by reducing the need to transport fish by boat from the Scottish mainland.

Its regional director Sigurd Pettersen thanked those involved in the project for their hard work. He also thanked the European Fisheries Fund and Shetland Islands Council for their financial backing.


He said: “This investment by Grieg Seafood represents a huge leap forward for us and is tangible evidence of the company’s continuing commitment to salmon farming in Shetland.”

SIC development committee chairman Alastair Cooper said: “I’m really pleased to see Grieg Seafood make such a positive contribution to the local aquaculture industry and I wish the company well with their plans.”

Cooper added that the council had supported the project from its outset and the local authority’s £314,000 contribution had helped attract almost £1.1 million of investment from the European Fisheries Fund.

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