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Seafood stories

The following stories relate to Tasmania’s Seafood sector:

Tasmania fisheries agreement

An agreement, which is designed to strengthen aquaculture in Tasmania and regional Canada, has been signed. It encourages sector growth through a shared knowledge between both regions. The Memorandum of Understanding was inked by Tasmanian Primary Industries Minister, Guy Barnett, and Nova Scotia’s Fisheries and Aquaculture Minister, Keith Colwell, who led a visiting delegation to the state. It fosters an information exchange around fisheries and aquaculture development between Tasmania and Nova Scotia. It's another important boost for one of the state’s most important industries according to Minister Barnett: “The Tasmanian Government is looking forward to working cooperatively with the Nova Scotian Government, as we both continue to develop and improve best practice fishing. Tasmania’s $947 million per annum seafood sector is synonymous with our premium food brand, and we are always looking at ways to value add.”

19 March 2019, Edition 203

Incentive plan targets sea urchin pest

An innovative Tasmanian plan to rid the ocean of a devastating pest is also helping to establish a new export industry. Divers are being paid to collect sea urchins, which are then sent to a processing factory for a roe-based export industry. Already the incentive program, initiated by the Tasmanian Abalone Council [TACL], has resulted in more than a million of these marine pests being harvested. Sea urchins have devastated kelp beds on the East Coast and are one of the major contributors to lost productivity of abalone reefs. The TACL said it was part of a multi-faceted effort by industry, government and scientists to slow down the spread of the Centrostephanus sea urchin as water temperatures rise. TACL chief executive, Dean Lisson, told The Advocate: "The aim of the program is to reduce degradation of productive abalone habitat while assisting the start-up of the Centrostephanus sea urchin export industry.”

19 March 2019, Edition 203

Artificial kelp reefs unlock secrets

Artificial reefs could help preserve Tasmania’s famous giant kelp forests, with scientists hoping the reefs may shed light on why seaweed ecosystems are being degraded around the world. Researchers from the Institute for Marine and Antarctic Studies (IMAS) in Hobart built an array of artificial reefs off Tasmania’s East Coast where kelp forests have been impacted by climate change and invasive sea urchins. They want to test how adult kelp, at different densities and sizes, modify their physical environment and influence juveniles. Lead researcher, Dr Cayne Layton, said: “Increasingly kelp are being threatened by stressors such as ocean warming, urbanisation and pollution … We built a series of artificial reefs and transplanted kelp at different densities and patch sizes, recording how the environment within these patches differed and how that influenced the juvenile kelp.”

14 February 2019, Edition 202

Federal tick for Storm Bay salmon

The federal Environment Department has given the green light to Tassal’s expansion plans in Storm Bay, south of Hobart. Tassal is proposing to add four, 45-hectare salmon leases, near Wedge Island. It has been decided that Tassal does not require approval under the federal Environment Protection and Biodiversity Conservation Act. However, a Department of Primary Industries, Parks, Water and Environment spokeswoman told The Mercury: “Marine farming lease areas and authorisations to conduct marine farming operations, in the form of marine farming licences and environmental licences, must be in effect before Tassal can commence marine farming operations within the newly established marine farming zone.” The Tasmanian Government ticked off on the plans late last year on the recommendation of the Marine Farming Review Panel. Tassal will now work through the state’s environmental licence process to progress its planned Storm Bay expansion.

14 February 2019, Edition 202

National Export win for local company

Hobart-based Echoview has won a gong at the prestigious Australian Export Awards. The software company took out the award for Digital Technologies at the 56th annual event held in Canberra last month. Echoview specialises in hydro-acoustic data that assesses fish populations for stock assessment and sustainability studies. It has customers in more than 65 countries and 95 per cent of its business comes from export sales. As he praised Echoview, Premier Will Hodgman pointed out: “The latest international merchandise exports figures confirm global demand for Tasmanian products continues to surge, with the annual export growth rate reaching 26 per cent, three times the national rate. The Tasmanian Government is committed to expanding and developing international markets for Tasmanian businesses to export their world-class goods and services globally.”

7 December 2018, Edition 201

Farming success

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When they set up their salmon business as a side hobby, Frances and Peter Bender – the founders of Huon Aquaculture – could never have imagined they would create history by becoming the first fish farmers to be named Australian Farmer of the Year.

9 November 2018

Seafood seduces iconic chef

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One of the world’s top chefs, Brazilian Alex Atala, has ‘been seduced’ by Tasmania’s seafood during a day on the water cruising the beautiful D’Entrecasteaux Channel.

8 November 2018, Edition 200

Mapping Tasmania’s shellfish future

A boost for Tasmania’s world-class shellfish sector. The State Government is partnering with the shellfish and oyster industry to enhance the state’s reputation for quality seafood. This year’s State Budget delivered $400,000, over four years, to establish the Tasmanian Shellfish Market Access program (ShellMAP). Minister for Primary Industries, Sarah Courtney, says the signing of the ShellMAP agreement with Oysters Tasmania and the Tasmanian Seafood Council demonstrates how the Government is working to improve the capacity of the oyster industry to manage market access, food safety and Tasmania’s reputation for quality seafood. The new ShellMAP management committee will be led by Ian Cartwright, a marine resource management specialist with more than 30 years’ experience. He is also currently a Commissioner for the Australian Fisheries Management Authority.

12 September 2018, Edition 198

Tassie oysters declared foodie heaven

Savouring plump fresh Tasmanian oysters straight from the water at Freycinet is officially one of the world’s most divine food experiences. That bible of travel – Lonely Planet – has released this year’s coveted Ultimate Eatlist of top 500 dining experiences, and our oysters make the cut at the number 13 spot. The Ultimate Eatlist authors write: “As an oyster lover you owe yourself a pilgrimage to the bivalve mollusc mecca that is Tasmania. For fans of fresh shellfish the whole East Coast is a dream destination.” Food-writers, bloggers, and The Lonely Planet’s well-travelled staff, all cast votes for the ultimate list of their most memorable foodie experiences. Entries are evaluated on taste, cultural importance, and location ambience. Eating pintxos [bar snacks] in San Sebastian, Spain was voted the ultimate eat, closely followed by a bowl of curry laksa in the Malaysian capital of Kuala Lumpur. Sushi in Tokyo rounded out the top three foodie experiences.

12 September 2018, Edition 198

Salmon for chefs

The world can’t get enough of Tasmania’s salmon, and chefs are the big winners with a new product launched onto the market. Local salmon producer – Huon Aquaculture – has released a new Chef Series product range designed especially for food service professionals. Huon co-founder, Francis Bender explained: “Over the years, we have worked closely with a lot of chefs and we have listened to what they need in their kitchens; the same Huon quality but in larger quantities and with less fiddly packaging. This is how our Chef Series came to life.” This new range includes pate and caviars in larger 1kg sizes. There is also a new banquet-ready salmon that is hand-sliced horizontally and unique to Huon. Francis and Peter Bender established Huon aquaculture in 1986. The company now produces approximately 24,000 tonnes of salmon every year from farm sites around Tasmania.

3 July 2018, Edition 196

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Tasmania's Stories Edition 203

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Brand Tasmania is about to enter an exciting new era as a statutory authority. Please enjoy your March newsletter.

22 March 2019, Edition 203

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