Deep-sea salmon farm to go for public tender
Some 21 financiers across three continents have registered their interest in a proposed €60 million deep sea organic salmon farm in Galway Bay.
Bord Iascaigh Mhara, the seafood development agency, said it was not at liberty to identify any of those interested in the project.
It has applied for a licence for the development and will hold a public tender process for the operation of the farm. However, the licence will remain in the hands of the State, according to BIM chief executive Jason Whooley.
“Investors from around the world are inquiring as to how soon we can progress this project. On the other side, we are receiving calls on a regular basis from people seeking employment on the proposed farm, many of them emigrants wanting to return home,” he said.
According to BIM, the proposed salmon farm could create 500 jobs in the local area and generate a wage flow of €14.5 million a year. The licence application is to farm up to 15,000 tonnes of organic salmon, more than double the State’s entire output.
The Inland Fisheries Ireland has raised concerns about the location and scale of the salmon farm and its impact on wild salmon and sea trout stocks. Groups such as Friends of the Irish Environment have also raised questions about the scale of the plans, the potential for pollution and the spreading of disease.
An eight-week public consultation period closes next Wednesday.