SCOTTISH SEAFOOD SECTOR TO TRAIN TALENT
The Scottish Seafood Association (SSA) is leading a two-year pilot project to attract and prepare new entrants for a career in seafood processing and train and upskill the existing workforce to help raise industry standards and deliver sectoral growth.
SSA will deliver a range of specialised courses certified to Royal Environment Health Institute for Scotland (REHIS) and Seafish standards, including food hygiene, HACCP, health & safety, raw material sensory assessment and fish smoking training to upskill the existing workforce, while new entrants to the industry will be provided with a structured induction programme covering health and safety, basic knife skills and food hygiene.
Technical advice and training will be delivered over a 24-month period by former managing director of Young’s Seafood in Fraserburgh, Michael Sim, who said: “This is a great opportunity for the seafood sector to be be trail blazers, and by investing in people and skills now, gives business an added advantage in the market now and in the future.”
The project approved by NE Scotland Fisheries Local Action Group (NESFLAG) includes funds for training equipment and a part-time (two days per week) training post for the duration of the pilot.
Following further contributions from seafood companies, Seafish (via the Scottish Seafood Training Network), Aberdeenshire Council and the Scottish Government, the project is to be expanded to a four-day per week programme.
SSA CEO Jimmy Buchan explained the organisation will interact closely with its members and the wider seafood industry to identify knowledge and skills gaps and will be designing training provision to address those needs.
The project aligns closely with the Scottish Government’s Ambition 2030 strategy, which aims to double the value of the Scottish food and drink sector to GB£30bn by 2030.