include an environmental strategy setting out the applicants’ commitment to reducing the organisations carbon footprint and the improvement of environmental performance.
The scheme is based on a recommendation of the Seafood Task Force which was established by the minister to assess the impacts of Brexit and the Trade and Cooperation Agreement on the fishing sector and coastal communities.
It aims to mitigate the adverse economic and social consequences of the withdrawal of the United Kingdom from the EU on seafood processors adversely affected by loss of raw material supply arising from the TCA quota reductions, aquaculture enterprises directly impacted by the UK withdrawal, and coastal communities adversely affected by a broad range of impacts arising from the TCA quota reductions and wider Brexit impacts.
This scheme will support aquaculture enterprises to undertake capital investment projects to sustainably grow production, value and employment, will encourage the entry into the sector of new aquaculture enterprises and will support the evolution of SME enterprises through scaling up.
Announcing the approval of the scheme, the minister said:
Our aquaculture sector employs 2,000 people directly and supports thousands more in the local economies. There is even greater potential for growth. The supports for these producers will help create jobs and increase Ireland’s supply of high-quality seafood to local markets and for export.”
Based on the recommendation by the Task Force, the scheme will support investments in modernisation and capacity building, increasing added-value in products, improving energy supply and efficiency, and reducing environmental impact. Importantly, the scheme will also support new entrants into the aquaculture industry. Grants of 30 percent to 50 percent of eligible costs will be available.