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Outer Hebrides smokehouse set to cut carbon and increase production

Published: 19/01/2024

A North Uist business, which produces premium smoked fish and shellfish products, has secured £25,561 investment from Highlands and Islands Enterprise (HIE) for a £63,902 processing and energy efficiency project.

Hebridean Smokehouse is based in the village of Clachan employing ten people all year round and up to 25 during the busy Christmas packing season. 

Products manufactured by the firm are sold into a variety of markets including retail, food service, mail order and gift markets. The range includes Scottish farmed salmon, mackerel and King scallops.

Products have a dedicated fan base around the world and the business has a significant mail order component.

The company is keen to improve the energy efficiency of its production process and reduce the overall carbon footprint of its premises by renewing the 20-year-old air conditioning within processing areas, enabling it to move towards more environmentally secure refrigerant gases.

The firm has also been exploring new international markets and opportunities to expand its product base. This expansion project includes investment in skin packaging technology to improve the presentation of some existing products and to gain new markets.

Joanna Peteranna, area manager for HIE in the Outer Hebrides, said: “Companies such as the Hebridean Smokehouse are vital for the Outer Hebridean economy and bring employment opportunities to our communities.

“This latest project by Hebridean Smokehouse will make many improvements to the business, mainly carbon and cost reductions, and will also boost production capacity and enhance the brand visibility. We’re very pleased to have been able to support the project and look forward to continuing to work with the company as they implement the plans.”

Christopher West is a passionate advocate of the smokehouse’s premium products ever since he became general manager in 2000. He said: “Hebridean Smokehouse is working hard to reduce our carbon footprint and the assistance from HIE toward more environmentally friendly and efficient air conditioning was pivotal to our investment in this upgrade. The diversification of packaging formats that the new skin packaging machine provides will enhance our offer to UK and overseas markets.

“We have already generated advance orders for products using this technology in Japan and we expect a good pick-up here in the UK for products presented in a skin packaged format. The recyclability of the packaging elements keeps us up to date with customer expectations as well as enhancing the presentation of our premium products. Thank you again, HIE, for helping to make this investment possible.

Taigh-smocaidh Innse Gall a’ gearradh càrbon ’s a’ meudachadh cinneasachd

Tha Taigh-smocaidh Innse Gall stèidhichte ann am baile a’ Chlachain far a bheil 10nar dhaoine a’ faighinn an cosnaidh fad na bliadhna agus suas ri 25 neach aig seusan pacaidh dripeil na Nollaige.

Tha na toraidhean dèante leis a’ chompanaidh air an reic dha measgachadh de mhargaidean a’ gabhail a-steach bùithtean, seirbheis bìdh, òrdughan tron phost agus margaidean thiodhlacan. Tha an raon a’ còmhdach bradan tuathanais Albannach, rionnach agus creachainn mhòra.

Tha fèill air na toraidhean sin air feadh an t-saoghail agus tha òrdughan puist nam pàirt mhòr den ghnothachas.

Tha a’ chompanaidh fìor dhèidheil air èifeachdas cumhachd a’ phròiseas saothrachaidh a leasachadh   agus lorg càrboin iomlan an togalaich a lùghdachadh le bhith ag ath-ùrachadh an uidheim èadharachaidh, a tha 20 bliadhna a dh’aois, taobh a-staigh raointean giullachd, gus a chuideachadh gu gluasad a dh’ionnsaigh ghasaichean stuth-fuarachaidh a tha nas tèarainte gu h-àrainneachdail. 

Tha a’ chompanaidh cuideachd air a bhith a’ rannsachadh mhargaidean eadar-nàiseanta ùra agus cothroman air a’ bhunait toraidh a leudachadh. Tha am pròiseact leudachaidh seo a’ gabhail a-steach tasgadh ann an teicneòlas pacaidh craicinn gus taisbeanadh air cuid de na toraidhean làthaireach a leasachadh agus margaidean ùra a chosnadh.  

Thuirt Joanna Peteranna, manaidsear sgìreil HIE ann an Innse Gall: “Tha companaidhean leithid Taigh-smocaidh Innse Gall deatamach do dh’eaconamaidh Innse Gall agus a’ toirt chothroman cosnaidh do ar coimhearsnachdan.

“Bidh am pròiseact as ùire seo le Taigh-smocaidh Innse Gall a’ toirt leasachadh air a’ ghnothachas, gu h-àraid a thaobh lùghdachaidhean càrboin is cosgais, agus cuideachd a’ neartachadh comas toraidh agus ag àrdachadh faicsinneachd a’ bhrannd. Tha sinn glè thoilichte a bhith comasach air taic a thoirt don phròiseact agus tha sinn a’ coimhead air adhart ri leantainn ag obair leis a’ chompanaidh fhad ’s a tha iad a’ toirt am planaichean gu buil.”

Tha an t-àrd-mhanaidsear, Crìsdean West, air a bhith dìoghrasach mu thagradh às leth thoraidhean àrd-ìreil an taigh-smocaidh a-riamh bho fhuair e dreuchd an àrd-mhanaidsear ann an 2000. Thuirt e:

“Tha Taigh-smocaidh Innse Gall ag obair cruaidh gus ar lorg càrboin a lùghdachadh agus bha an cuideachadh bho HIE a thaobh uidheam èadharachaidh nas èifeachdaich agus nas càirdeil don àrainneachd, fìor chudromach don tasgadh againn san ath-leasachadh seo. Tha an t-iomadachadh air cruthan pacaidh a tha an t-inneal pacaidh craicinn a’ toirt seachad, a’ neartachadh ar tairgse do mhargaidean na RA agus thall-thairis.

“Tha sinn mar-thà air òrdughan ro-làimh a ghinteadh airson toraidhean a’ cleachdadh an teicneòlais seo ann an Iapàn agus tha sinn a’ sùileachadh iarraidh math an seo san RA airson toraidhean air an taisbeanadh ann an cruth pacaidh craicinn. Tha an comas ath-chuairteachaidh air na h-eileamaidean pacaidh gar cumail suas ri dòchasan an luchd-ceannach a thuilleadh air a bhith ag àrdachadh an taisbeanaidh air ar prìomh thoraidhean. Tapadh leibh a-rithist HIE airson cuideachadh leis an tasgadh seo a dhèanamh comasach.