Australian Fisheries In Great Shape

Australian Fisheries are experiencing boom times as favourable environmental conditions and the positive impact of sustainable quota managed fisheries are linking together to produce robust catches across many fisheries over the last 12 months.

Australian Fisheries Management Authority (AFMA) reports that scallop catches in the Bass Strait Central Zone Fishery has resulted in the best season in 15 years. AFMA set the highest total allowable catch level in the past six years in the fishery. Industry operators reported excellent yields of healthy scallops with strong demand both domestically and in export markets. With a decision by operators to leave stock in the water in the 2016 season the market is anticipating a viable quota allocation for the 2017 season.

In the Southern Bluefin Tuna (SBT) Fishery operators are experiencing excellent catches of fish south of Kangaroo Island, South Australia. Numerous tuna farming enterprises have caught their quota early and are transferring to farm sites off Port Lincoln. Industry reports suggest that the size of fish into the farm is up by 1 – 2 kg per fish on previous years, which is a positive indication of favourable environmental conditions and sound resource management. It will be interesting to see how much quota will be available for east coast long line operators in mid-2017. Fisheries Asset Brokers suggests that the east coast SBT fishery will provide a viable alternative to Eastern Tuna operators that are able to secure quota, especially if the Yellowfin Tuna component of the Eastern Tuna and Billfish Fishery (ETBF) does not yield the same level of catch from the previous two seasons.

The Northern Prawn Fishery is preparing for another successful season with the Banana Prawn season set to commence in April 2017. Fisheries Asset Brokers suggests that with the impact of white spot disease on the domestic farming sector and the suspension of the import of green prawns into Australia, market prices for wild caught prawns should be strong as demand for clean and green prawns increases.

Christian Pyke from Fisheries Asset Brokers said robust catches over the past 12 months from key Australian fisheries demonstrates the value of sound fisheries management which underpins the value of assets such as quota, licences and vessels.

Christian Pyke is contactable on 0428 233 200 or