Chinese delegates on fact-finding mission to Grimsby
INTERNATIONAL awareness of Grimsby's award-winning seafood cluster has been underlined, after a Chinese delegation made a four-and-half-hour trek through blizzard conditions to understand the town's offer.
Shanghai-based CNR Group is heading up the European fact-finding mission, having recently entered the ship-building market.
The company produced the first steam locomotive in China, and three years ago introduced a high-speed train capable of 235mph.
Turning attention to the water, fishing vessels and the immediate storage and processing of the catch was of key interest, so too the work boats now operating from Grimsby in the rapidly developing offshore wind industry.
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Through an interpreter, Xu Hao, research fellow and director of Fishery Machinery and Instrument Research Institute of Chinese Academy, Fishery Sciences, which made up a key part of the 12-strong delegation, said: "Thank you for your welcome of us coming to Grimsby, for the presentation and information. We have driven four-and-a-half-hours this morning from London and it is really worth it to get some more information on two fronts, which here combined we see together.
"There is a focus on developing vessels both for fishing, and project-working vessels. We wanted to know more about the supply chain, the equipment that is being used on fishing trips, and how it is being used more efficiently – both in catching more fish and different ways of processing. Also, the information to support the processing, how to get information about the processing and how to deal with the information produced. They are two fields we are very interested in."
A presentation on the town's primary industry was given at Humber Seafood Institute, where the work to get an enlarged Border Inspection Post was also underlined, with the area's representatives well aware of the growing importance of non-European imports.
Zhou Yi, the delegation co-ordinator, studied at the University of Hull and was delighted the delegation could visit her home from home. She said: "Grimsby has a long standing fisheries tradition and is now building a strong reputation for innovative technology in this sector."