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Scottish shipbuilder books fish farm vessel orders

Written by Nick Blenkey
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Salmon feed barge

AUGUST 21, 2014 — A contract worth in excess of £3.3 million (about $5.5 million) has been secured by Macduff Shipyards, Aberdeenshire, Scotland, from Scottish Sea Farms.

The contract is for four 150 t steel feed barges and two 15 m landing craft general purpose fish farm vessels.

The barges and landing craft have been designed by the yard in cooperation with Macduff Ship Design.

The 19.8 m feed barges will have a capacity of 150 t each. They will  be fitted with Orbit GMT feeding systems, and powered by John Deere engines.

According to Macduff Ship Design the two 14.95 m landing craft workboats are based on the Emma, a successful Macduff Ship Design vessel built a few years ago, and will be capable of carrying 20 t of fish farm feed on the deck.  

landing craft

Landing craft workboat

Scottish Sea Farms continues to expand its operations and Jim Gallagher, Managing Director, commented: “This latest contract is part of our £13 million planned investment programme for new site activity and we are looking to spend as much of this money with Scottish firms as we can. Two of these vessels are destined for our new sites in Orkney and Kishorn, where we are creating at least ten new jobs and fresh opportunities for trainees and apprenticeships. The others are upgrades for our existing sites and mainland operations. The new sites are required to help us meet the growing demand from our domestic clients and will develop over time to create export values of approximately £10 million per site.”

Managing Director of Macduff Shipyards Ltd, John Watt, commented: “The contract will be completed in the Macduff and Buckie yards and this type of project allows us to plan for the future. The yard has just taken on 10 new apprentices this year and increased the workforce to cover the additional work. Also it is good news for subcontractors who work at the yard and the local economy, it’s good to be competitive and keep this type of work in Scotland.

“Macduff Shipyards Ltd has worked on refurbishing barges and vessels for Scottish Sea Farms for many years but this is the first time that new barges have been built at the yard. The experience we have gained refitting existing barges has been invaluable in designing the new barge. Two barges are due to be delivered by the end of 2014 with a further two barges and the two vessels next year.”

“Currently the yard is completing the Benarkle for local skipper Mark Addison and partners and has started construction of a 15 m scalloper for Kallin Shellfish, along with the contract from Scottish Sea Farms this will keep the order book full for the next 12 months.”

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