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Seafood Industry Australia welcomes report on aquaculture. Seafood Industry Australia’s (SIA) Aquaculture Advisory Committee (AAC) has welcomed the release of the Australian Government’s House Standing Committee on Agriculture and Water Resources inquiry report on the Australian aquaculture sector ‘Supporting a strong future for Australian aquaculture’ released on February 9, 2022.

“On behalf of the AAC and the broader Australian seafood industry I would like to welcome the release of the inquiry’s report, endorse the report’s 15 recommendations and thank the Committee Chair, the Committee and the Secretariat for their time, hard work and most importantly, their support,” SIA CEO Veronica Papacosta said.

“Australian  aquaculture  is a growing industry and has a strong positive outlook… [with]  a  reputation  for  producing  premium product and further  improvements  will strengthen  our  market  position,” Committee Chair Rick WIlson said. “An expanding  Australian  aquaculture  sector  will  help  meet domestic  demand for  seafood,  boost  exports and provide  thousands  of additional jobs, especially in  regional areas.

“Aquaculture,  like  all  industries,  has  its share  of  challenges  and potential barriers  to growth. The  Committee  has made  a  number  of  recommendations with  the aim of  overcoming these  barriers.”

“Importantly, the Committee’s recommendations support SIA’s key positions around the legislated Country of Origin Labelling for seafood sold in food service, the establishment of a dedicated aquaculture unit within the Department of Agriculture, Water and the Environment, strong biosecurity frameworks, streamlined jurisdiction regulations, and reinforced calls for Government support to improve aquaculture’s social licence by addressing consumer and community concerns,” Ms Papacosta said.

“Aquaculture is now the largest sector of the Australian seafood industry, accounting for 51 per cent of GVP. The sector is currently worth $1.6 billion nationally, and is forecast to grow both domestically and internationally, backing the sector’s growth towards the $100 billion Ag2030 goal. The AAC and SIA welcomes the Committee’s report as it marks an important step to delivering on that commitment.

“We applaud the report’s recommendations and support from the Government for our aquaculture sector who continue to set international benchmarks by providing fresh, high-quality, sustainable seafood year-round, while exceeding regulatory requirements. We look forward to working with the governments to further our world-leading sector.

“We’d like to acknowledge the hard work of the industry members and stakeholders including Tassal, the Fisheries Research and Development Corporation, the Australian Barramundi Farmers’ Association, and the Australian Prawn Farmers Association who have worked tirelessly behind the scenes and alongside the government throughout this enquiry.”

A copy of the Committee’s report can be found here.