Scottish farmed salmon production has hit its highest level since 2004.
Statistics published on Monday showed that last year 158,018 tonnes was produced with a value of £584.7m - a year-on-year increase of 5.6% taking account of inflation.
The rise in production of 2.5% in 2011 follows steady increases over recent years.
Environment minister Paul Wheelhouse said: “Scotland has a world renowned reputation for high quality, delicious and healthy farmed fish and shellfish. Salmon is our largest food export and I welcome the continued growth in production and value in 2011.
“Fish farming is a key food sector for Scotland, providing an important contribution to the economy – particularly in remote and rural communities in the west coast and Northern Isles. The industry employs almost 1500 people, while many more jobs are underpinned by aquaculture indirectly.
“We support the industry’s ambitions for sustainable growth – as demonstrated by our intention to bring forward an Aquaculture and Fisheries Bill – and we are working with them to keep the focus on minimising the impact on the marine environment and adopting best practices.
“More than 60% of Scottish farmed salmon now has the RSPCA’s Freedom Foods accreditation, which is a great endorsement and selling point.”