Three Galway seafood companies have benefited from grant programme which has awarded almost €2.5 million to support investment in the marine sector.
Minister for Agriculture Food and the Marine, Michael Creed today announced that 17 seafood enterprises in nine counties have been awarded €2,369,801 in grants under the European Maritime and Fisheries Fund Operational Programme.
These grants are in support of companies which are making their own investments to expand their facilities and reach new markets.
Michael Lydon of Maam has been awarded an EMFF grant of €18,039 to help upgrade his shellfish longline system, supporting a total investment of €45,099 under the Sustainable Aquaculture Scheme.
Breizon Teo shellfish producers in Rossaveal are receiving a grant of €5,004 under the Seafood Innovation & Business Planning Scheme supporting a total investment of €10,009 for a R&D project to pack Irish prawns for the French market.
And the Connemara Producers Group have been awarded €100,571 for market development in Asia as part of the Seafood Scaling & New Market Development Scheme, with the total investment coming to €201,143.
In total the grants announced today will support total investment in these companies of €6.5 million in the aquaculture and seafood processing sectors.
“Despite uncertainties created by Brexit over the past 2 years, there is still strong confidence in our seafood sector about its future growth prospects,” Michael Creed said.
“These companies are seizing the market opportunities that are there in abundance for quality Irish seafood products.”
The EMFF programme is providing €240m in funding to the seafood sector (fisheries, aquaculture and seafood processing) over the period 2014 to 2020, and is co-funded by the EU and the government.
It consists of five separate grants schemes, three of which awarded funding to local companies this year.
The Sustainable Aquaculture Scheme supports capital investment by licensed aquaculture enterprises to sustainably grow production and reduce the environmental impact of aquaculture.
The Innovation & Business Planning Scheme provides up to 30 percent of the funding for seafood businesses to improve their production capacity.
And the Scaling & New Market Development Scheme provides up to half of the funding for businesses which are trying to create new export products.