AN INDUSTRY-WIDE labour shortage affecting Scotland's salmon industry is "less acute" at Mowi's Rosyth processing facility.

The firm said, however, it was still actively recruiting and would welcome applications from West Fifers.

This week, Salmond Scotland wrote letters to Tory leadership candidates Rishi Sunak and Liz Truss, calling for a more “enlightened” approach to immigration to assist businesses.

The body says the industry does not have enough staff across key skill areas due to workers returning to their homes in Eastern Europe as a result of Brexit.

Very low unemployment and extremely limited labour availability in areas where businesses have processing facilities has meant that factories are short of about 20 per cent of staff.

A change to key worker definitions, changes to the salary cap level and a broader public signal that the UK is open to people and thus to business have been cited by the body as measures needed to improve the issue.

They have also asked candidates to take a “pragmatic” approach to trade negotiations with the EU to avoid a so-called “trade war”, with a “clear focus on the nation’s export businesses who depend on a positive, professional relationship with France and the other countries of the EU”.

Tavish Scott, chief executive of Salmon Scotland, said: “Our businesses are vital to the economic performance of the UK – not only in economically-fragile coastal and rural areas, but across the length and breadth of the country in processing, engineering, science and technology industries."

The former Scottish Liberal Democrat leader invited Mr Sunak and Ms Truss to visit a facility if they were elected “at their earliest convenience".

A spokesperson for Salmon Scotland said growing demand for fresh Scottish salmon, combined with a shrinking labour pool, meant salmon farmers were finding it difficult filling key vacancies.

“Salmon Scotland has asked the two candidates bidding to become the next Prime Minister for government action on jobs," they said.

"The issue is less acute for Mowi’s processing site in Rosyth but all producers are actively recruiting and would welcome applications from people who live locally.”

Dunfermline-based Department of Work and Pensions partnership manager, Phil Martin, said Mowi in Rosyth had been recruiting on an ongoing basis for a number of months.

"We are doing our best to recruit people for them," he said. "We did have a number going in but there seems to be demand for more."