Huon Aquaculture today releases a discussion paper, the Company’s contribution to public discussion about the future of the salmonid industry.
“We have a once in a generation opportunity to establish a strong framework that will guide the safe, sustainable growth of a world-class salmon industry. It should not be rushed and it should not be used as a political football in the lead up to the State election,” said Huon Aquaculture Co-founder and Executive Director Frances Bender.
Huon has invited a wide range of stakeholders to meet with company representatives to discuss their sustainability assurance framework both collectively and individually to understand their views and help inform our own.
“Our document is aspirational and speaks to our belief that as an ethical, responsible business, informed by international best practice and robust science, there is an opportunity to improve our performance and set the benchmark for future expansion at the same time increasing the independence and robustness of our regulatory framework.
Specifically, Huon would like to see:
- An independent Finfish Aquaculture Regulator that brings together environmental, biosecurity and fish health regulation under a single regulatory function;
- The reconstitution of the Board of Advice and References and an expanded Marine Farm Review Panel that effectively separates the regulatory and planning functions whilst providing current experience and expertise; and
- Introduction of a Tasmanian Veterinary Model and adoption of improved biosecurity principles and standards to better regulate the industry;
Huon is calling on all sides of politics to work collaboratively and be mature and respectful.
“Peter and I have helped to build this industry from the ground up and we want to be part of its long-term sustainable future.
“I believe that as a community, we can have mature and robust conversations that are informed by the best available science and right now we have a once in a generation opportunity to develop a shared vision for the future of the salmon industry in Tasmania,” said Mrs Bender.
“The release of the Government’s draft salmon plan is a good start and I encourage all Tasmanians to participate in the consultation process. In addition, today I have written to the Minister to propose an international salmon symposium hosted by IMAS as early as October.
“It is important that we learn from the experience of other salmon growing regions and that we listen to the experts and scientists, drawn from the best in the world, to help inform the direction our industry takes into the future.
“I have had initial discussions with IMAS who are excited by the concept and are willing to develop a program later this year to provide a series of workshops and lectures for a range of audiences.
“It is important that it is not just politicians, policy makers and regulators that hear those views. I believe it is important that all stakeholders and communities have the chance to exchange thoughts and ideas with world leading scientists and experts and also hear about their experiences whilst sharing their own.
“Peter and I travel the world looking at how things are done, how they can be improved and how we can learn from the experiences – both good and bad – of other farmers and farming regions.
“Right now we have 18 staff in Norway attending the world’s biggest aquaculture conference and in the last 12 months more than 30 Huon staff have travelled overseas to share our experiences and learn from others.
“Huon is prepared to financially support the symposium and I have invited the other salmon farmers and suppliers to financially support the idea to bring it to reality in October.”
For further information contact: Jane Gallichan
Huon Aquaculture Corporate Affairs Manager
0400 159 664 or firstname.lastname@example.org