BUSINESS: ‘Aquaculture’ set to be the next booming industry in Dorset

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A campaign by Dorset LEP has launched, #DorsetAquaBites, to showcase Dorset aquaculture, with the hope of attracting further investment to the region,

Aquaculture is the breeding, rearing, and harvesting of marine algae, seaweed, fish and molluscs in all types of water environments. The industry currently generates more than £1.4 billion for the UK economy. By 2022, the global aquaculture market is projected to exceed £174 billion and by 2030 is forecast to be the prime source of seafood.

Jim Stewart, Dorset LEP Chair and Chief Executive of Poole Harbour Commissioners, says: “This campaign is a chance to show off our fantastic local companies who are benefitting from a great location for business. Dorset is ready to step up its aquaculture sector as conditions are perfect.”

Throughout the #DorsetAquaBites campaign, attention will turn to the Dorset LEP social channels where there will be conversation on the main areas of aquaculture in Dorset, highlighting innovative local businesses.

Mark Firth, from Hooke Springs Trout Farm, which produces brown and rainbow trout in Beaminster, said: “Our consistent water quality and quantity supply to this farm is second to none. If you offered me any other part of England to go to I would say no thank you.”

Sarah Pinder, from Dorset Seaweeds, a Portland based business which turns wild seaweed into biostimulent, said: “I think aquaculture in Dorset is a really exciting opportunity. There’s a great potential here, it could create a lot of jobs. If we could potentially get our seaweed from seaweed farms in the future that would be fantastic.”

The #DorsetAquaBites campaign set sail yesterday in the lead up to the ‘OH20: Aquaculture Expo’ event. Yet, the campaign will continue thereafter to continue the conversation on Dorset’s aquaculture industry.

The ‘OH20: Aquaculture Expo – Commercial Solutions to Global Problems’ is the UK’s first expo in which aquaculture will be discussed in the context of the One Health concept. The expo will showcase sustainable commercial UK aquaculture businesses.

Those attending include buyers, investors, government support agencies and universities. The event is designed to encourage businesses and investors to capitalise on Dorset’s position as a great place to run and grow an aquaculture business while addressing One Health problems such as food supply and environmental protection. The event, which is being fully-funded and hosted by Dorset LEP, takes place on Wednesday 4 March at Kingston Maurward College, Dorchester – book via Eventbrite or the Dorset LEP website.

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