Shetland Fish Producers’ Organisation was established in 1982 to try to improve local fisheries management.
Initially it was focused on managing the price support scheme, and subsequently took control of managing quotas in Shetland. It created the concept of community quota operation and has since its inception bought quota when it has become available to maintain that system.
The SFPO has a critical role in marketing Shetland fish globally. It has supported the processing sector through good times and bad, assisting for instance in the development of the Shetland Catch factory. It has also been instrumental in the partnership behind the Shetland Seafood Auction Company (SSAC). The SSAC introduced an electronic auction system at the markets in Lerwick and Scalloway in 2003, which has increased both landings and prices.
The SFPO has strong links with Shetland Seafood Quality Control, working to try to improve the quality of produce being landed.
Its 36 members contribute a levy to help with the development of commercial functions, and the organisation played a leading role in the construction of the new fish market in Lerwick, which opened for business in 2020. This facility is the most advanced of its kind in Britain.