In June 2018, Scottish Ministers announced a working group, chaired by John Goodlad, to examine the interactions between farmed and wild salmonids. Fisheries Management Scotland strongly support this approach and have participated in the first meeting, which was held on 31st October.

Dr Alan Wells, CEO of Fisheries Management Scotland and Roger Brook, Chairman of the Argyll District Salmon Fishery Board and a director of Fisheries Management Scotland, will represent the fisheries management sector in this process. Also represented on the working group are the Scottish Salmon Producers Organisation, Scottish Environment LINK, Marine Scotland, Marine Scotland Science, SEPA, SNH and Heads of Planning Scotland.

The first meeting of the group was very positive, and all participants were given the opportunity to express their expectations, perspectives and priorities for the process. We emphasised the need to make meaningful progress with some urgency, noting that there have been several previous attempts to move the debate forward. Our key priority is to develop a transparent and trusted regulatory system which fully considers the health and welfare of wild salmonids, in addition to farmed fish and addresses any local negative impacts.

The terms of reference will be finalised at the next meeting (29 November) and published on the Marine Scotland website in due course. Minutes, agendas and agreed papers will also be published.