Case Study - Emma Moffat, Fish Buyer

Emma Moffat, 28, is a Fish Buyer for Grimsby based seafood supplier Icelandic Seachill who employ 1400 staff in the UK, providing chilled fish to the UK retail market.

"I graduated with a degree in English Language, Literature and Creative writing and soon started working in adult education for the public sector, helping adults to read and write. 

The course of my career soon switched, due to being made redundant and although it wasn't a conscious decision to join the Seafood Industry, I applied and was accepted onto Cumbrian Seafoods' graduate management scheme.

Part of my induction into Cumbrian Seafoods was spent working in production which involves turning the fish caught into the final product. I found that I loved working in the factory environment and this experience led to me running production nightshift until unfortunately, Cumbrian went into administration and I found myself looking for a new job... again! 

From past experience, I knew that adversity can lead to opportunities, so with invaluable hands on experience and fish knowledge, I was in a strong position to find another job in the Seafood industry, where there is a huge range of opportunities. The added bonus was that I'd met my boyfriend at Cumbrian Seafoods, so together we moved to Grimsby, the heart of the British seafood industry and both secured new roles with Icelandic Seachill.

My role as a fish buyer varies from day to day, but my main responsibilities are to ethically and sustainably source raw material in line with the needs of our individual customers which requires me to really understand our supply chains.

In this industry it is important to be a people person - I gained vital people skills when working in adult education which have enabled me to confidently communicate with people from all walks of life, an essential part of my job.

I work with a lot of experienced people who are experts in their field and I'm often amazed by the knowledge they impart. Most people in the industry are incredibly passionate about the work that they do, making it impossible not to become enthusiastic about my job and the industry itself.

In my role I've been lucky enough to travel to Iceland, Holland and Brussels, along with numerous trips to Aberdeen and Peterhead. In the coming year, I'm hoping to spend time in Norway and Canada to gain an increased knowledge of fish sourcing on a more global scale.

I receive a salary which I think is above average for someone of my age, and I know that the long hours I work are appreciated and recognised. I feel very fortunate to work for my current company as they have given me access to excellent training opportunities to help further my career.

I want to continue broadening my industry knowledge in the hope that I will be able to impart some of my knowledge and enthusiasm to encourage more young people into the industry."