Willis Expands Acquaculture Division, Hires New Underwriter to Lead

October 23, 2012

Recent studies show that wild fish stocks around the world are declining faster than feared – with more than half of fisheries worldwide facing shrinking stocks. As a result the demand for farmed fish is intensifying and the aquaculture industry is now the fastest growing agricultural and food production sector globally. More than half of all seafood consumed today is produced by aquaculture.

In recognition of this expansion and the demand for better risk management practices, Hughes-Gibb, the specialist agribusiness division of Willis Group Holdings, is strengthening the services that it offers clients to include more risk audits and consulting.

Hughes-Gibb, has appointed Dan Fairweather to head up its expanding aquaculture insurance broking and risk management division.

Fairweather, who previously underwrote aquaculture risks at RSA Insurance and on behalf of Lloyd’s Syndicates at the Global Aquaculture Insurance Consortium, will lead this expansion, reporting to Chris Williamson, managing director of Hughes-Gibb.

“Aquaculture is high risk and the management of these risks is fundamental to the success of any aquaculture operation,” said Fairweather. “Furthermore, with rapid expansion in production come new challenges for fish farmers, both in terms of competition for space and resources, but also in the culture and husbandry of new species.

“As fish farms become larger and technology develops to enable farms to move further offshore, or to produce fish in higher densities onshore, new risks emerge and more sophisticated risk management is required to deal with these complexities,” said Fairweather. “And in the wake of recent global disease outbreaks and large mortality events the ability to identify, analyze, report and monitor risks becomes even more vital.”

Now part of the Willis Global Specialty businesses, Hughes-Gibb was founded in 1959 as the first broker in London exclusively dedicated to bloodstock insurance, and has expanded to become a global bloodstock, livestock, aquaculture and crop/forestry broker.

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