Grants ranging from a few hundred pounds to nearly £1 million will support a raft of projects around the country after a £3m payout from Marine Fund Scotland (MFS).
The £14m fund is managed by the Scottish Government and was launched in March.
It replaced the European Maritime and Fisheries Fund, which provided significant marine funding to projects throughout Scotland before the UK’s exit from the EU.
The Marine Fund Scotland will continue to be key in supporting sustainable development of Scotland’s blue economy.”
Mairi Gougeon, rural affairs secretary.
The biggest MFS grant in the latest round is for just over £960,200 and goes to Dawnfresh Seafoods, allowing it to expand its fish processing factory in Arbroath.
North Yell Development Council, in Shetland, is getting £250,000 towards a £500,000-plus scheme to extend Cullivoe Industrial Estate and create a hub for marine business development and job creation.
The Scottish Shellfish Marketing Group has been awarded around £249,600 for a project aimed at efficiency and capacity improvements for the production of products for the UK multiple retail sector.
And Blueshell Mussels, of Brae, Shetland, will receive about £209,380 towards its £400,000-plus investment in new production equipment.
Meanwhile, Aberdeen-based Nolan Seafoods (UK) – part of north-east firm International Fish Canners – has been awarded about £204,600 for a new filleting line.
Thistle Seafoods, of Boddam, near Peterhead, is getting two grants worth a total of about £152,650.
One grant of around £138,300 will help Thistle to automate a production process, improve efficiencies in packaging and distribution, and reduce the level of wastage.
Another grant of £14,379 will help pay for further automation, reduction in wastage and plastic usage and fuel efficiencies.
St Margarets Hope Pier Trustees’ plan to extend the local pier, in the south of Orkney, to provide better protection for fishing vessels are supported by a grant of £122,400.
Among the smaller awards, Aberdeenshire Council is getting £22,905 for a feasibility study to assess the potential to open a fish market at Macduff harbour.
There are 42 projects in total receiving cash under the latest MFS funding round.
Rural Affairs Secretary Mairi Gougeon said: “This money is promoting innovation in sustainable practices, allowing businesses to explore new markets and further automate processes to help mitigate staff shortages, and supporting our coastal communities.
“The Marine Fund Scotland will continue to be key in supporting sustainable development of Scotland’s blue economy – investing in Scotland’s seafood sectors, creating sustainable jobs, and helping to protect Scotland’s marine environment.
“We have achieved all of this while the UK Government is poised to launch pillars of the UK Seafood Fund, which is set to duplicate funding and cause confusion at a time when businesses need less red-tape, not more.”
She added: “There is no doubt that Brexit has been a disaster for our marine-related industries and coastal communities.
“This has been compounded by the impact of the pandemic, which saw key markets close almost overnight.”
Around £11m in MFS funding has been awarded to date across a range of projects, including supporting young fishers to enter the sea fisheries industry, promoting sustainable aquaculture, protecting the marine environment and supporting Scotland’s coastal communities.