Young's Bluecrest Seafood has announced a GBP10m (US$17.2m) investment in its Macrae operation in Edinburgh.

Construction has already begun on a 4.7 acre site at Livingston, to build a state of the art facility of over 64,000 ft² producing top quality chilled seafood for the UK market.

The new site will complement Macrae's existing Edinburgh operation at Granton, which specialises in speciality seafood and is one of a group of dedicated partner suppliers to Waitrose supermarkets. When commissioned in 2007, it will allow a doubling of Macrae's Edinburgh production capacity, enabling it to take advantage of markets that are currently growing by up to 20% a year.

The development is expected to produce an initial gain of around 50 jobs by 2007. Some staff currently at Granton will transfer to Livingston when it opens, with further posts being created as the site develops.

"We have already discussed the project with our Granton team, who continue to be highly supportive of everything we are seeking to create," said Roy Cunningham, managing director of Macrae in Edinburgh. "It's an exciting time for us to be designing a quality new facility which, as well as embracing both our traditional and modern production processes, will also create a comfortable and rewarding working environment for the people who work there."

"The project will give us much-needed additional capacity and allow us to create one of the finest production facilities of its type anywhere in the UK," said Stewart McLelland, managing director of the Macrae group. "Demand for these products is growing fast, and since we make many of them using Scottish-sourced seafood, it's good news for both the Lothian region and Scotland as a whole."

This project has been assisted by the Scottish Executive under the Financial Instrument for Fisheries Guidance.