Even before the doors opened at Scottish Skipper Expo 2022 there was a perceptible air of excitement among the exhibitors at the superb exhibiting hall of the P&J Live arena in Aberdeen. The visitors’ car park was filling-up nicely and after a challenging two years caused by the pandemic, the Scottish fishing industry was once more looking forward to a showcase exhibition.
Once the show opened at 10am on Friday 13 May, the exhibition hall filled quickly and there was a real buzz in the atmosphere. This had all the hallmarks of being a great show – and so it proved, with energy coursing through the aisles as people relished the opportunity to meet with exhibiting companies, as well friends and colleagues, in a face-to-face setting again.
The expo was opened by Elspeth Macdonald, CEO of the Scottish Fishermen’s Federation, who sponsored the show, and Mari Gougeon, Scottish Government Cabinet Secretary for Rural Affairs, who wished everyone a fabulous couple of days at the expo. “It is fantastic that everyone is able to get together today,” she said in her opening address.
Elspeth Macdonald said: “It was a pleasure to welcome Rural Affairs Secretary Mairi Gougeon MSP to the Skipper Expo, which I’m pleased to say was very busy after two years with no collective industry events.”
Excellent business was conducted across the two days, with exhibitors noting the benefit of meeting customers in person and networking with other companies – it really was an opportunity to be cherished. One major beneficiary was boatbuilder Parkol Marine, who signed a contract for a new vessel to be constructed for Andy and Joshua Buchan.
Among the star attractions in the spacious exhibiting hall as a fishing vessel display from Poleson Marine, which offered visitors the opportunity to experience at first hand a new boat design.
At the end of the first day, a complimentary show reception was held in the Douglas Hotel, sponsored by Sunderland Marine and Commercial Oils. This proved the perfect venue for the industry to come together and catch up with one another in a social setting. The highest quality Scottish seafood on the night was supplied by fish merchants G J Jack and Messrs’ J Smith.
Sharon Boyle, Commercial Fishing Manager for show organiser, Mara Media, said she was thrilled by the success of the show and especially pleased with the new venue at the P&J Live.
“The P&J Live was superb and the popularity of the event resulted in us receiving interest from exhibitors in the run up to the show, with the larger venue enabling us to accommodate new exhibitors at the last minute, which added to the huge variety of stands available to visit. There were over 180 exhibiting companies present, which ensured that this was a show that had something for everyone.
“I would like to thank all exhibitors for their tremendous support, and we are already making plans for Scottish Skipper Expo 2023 – watch this space!”