Tag Archives: Queensland Seafood Industry Association

White Spot: Government has abandoned wild-caught prawn fishermen

THE $20 million in federal funding for prawn farmers affected by white spot is a great day for some and not so great for others if you are a commercial fishing business owner in the Moreton Bay region. There are some 300 micro and small fishing related businesses across the Moreton Bay region, including trawl and crab fishers, impacted by white spot that continue to be impacted in the wild and an ongoing movement control order on our commercial product. These businesses generate almost $20.5 million yet have received no assistance. At least 20 businesses have had their incomes severely impacted since December 2016 and still no help. The Deputy Prime Minister and Agriculture Minister Barnaby Joyce announced the Federal Government will give $20 million to prawn farmers impacted by white spot but said wild-catch fishermen are the responsibility of the State Government. click here to read the story 18:17

Eat prawns over Easter? They might’ve been contaminated, Brisbane prawn catches at risk from airport chemical spill

Prawns eaten over the Easter long weekend were most likely contaminated by last week’s toxic spill, Brisbane’s commercial fishers have warned. At least 300kg of prawns were caught from the contaminated zone of the Brisbane River and sold on to local residents over Easter because local fishers were not warned against it. State Environment Minister Steven Miles yesterday wrote to the Federal Minister for Infrastructure and Transport Darren Chester seeking immediate enforcement action to be taken against those responsible for the chemical spill and for the responsible party to “remediate and compensate for any harm caused”. The Queensland Seafood Industry Association received advice from Fisheries Queensland only on Tuesday – a week after the spill – to stop selling seafood caught within the contaminated zone. Local commercial fisher Michael Wilkinson said the advice was “too little, too late” after the State Government initially said the contaminated area did not affect commercial fishing zones. “It makes me sick to my stomach that I sold contaminated food to somebody unbeknown to me,” he said.  click to read the story 16:58

Brisbane prawn catches at risk from airport chemical spillclick here to read the story.

Fishing industry rattled as white spot disease breaks barriers

It was the outbreak they were expecting, but hoping would never come to pass. Concern and uncertainty seem to the prevailing moods amongst the Queensland commercial fishing industry, reeling from this week’s news that white spot disease had broken it’s containment in the Logan River and been detected in Moreton Bay. There’s also considerable frustration amongst members of the Queensland Seafood Industry Association (QSIA), many of whom predicted the outbreak was a matter of ‘when’, not ‘if’. “It definitely hasn’t been a good week for us,” says QSIA’s CEO Eric Perez. “There’s certainly a lot of concern about the impact this will have on the industry here, as well as the knock-on effects this will have on the wider community.” There appears to be no immediate threat to fisheries in the Gympie and Cooloola Cove regions, but tests are ongoing just to determine how far the disease has spread. continue reading the story here 11:16

White spot threat: is fishing finished in Queensland?

The Logan River white spot epidemic could destroy all mainland fishing in Queensland, including a big slice of the Cooloola Coast seafood and tourism economy, industry leader Kev Reibel has warned. A Queensland Seafood Industry Association board member and Tin Can Bay trawler operator, Mr Reibel said the threat was credible and immediate. “To say we are worried would be something of an understatement,” he said in an exclusive interview with The Gympie Times on Sunday. “We don’t know if it can be stopped and we don’t know its boundaries within the crustaceans, or even if it has any boundaries. If it affects crabs, that’s another industry and another tourism factor wiped out. He backed claims by industry environmental adviser and Bay net fishing operator Joe McLeod that the apparently unstoppable virus is a threat to the food chains which sustain all kinds of fin fishing. Mr McLeod said the plankton that kicked off the fin fish food chain included juvenile prawns and other crustaceans. “If they’re not there, there is nothing for the fish to eat,” Mr McLeod said yesterday. Both said there was a fearful lack of knowledge of the virus’ boundaries, especially with the crustacean group.  Continue reading the story here 09:32

Disease outbreak in Logan River prawns turns ugly as politicians go to war on compensation

PROFESSIONAL fishermen have called for a total Logan River fishing ban in an attempt to control the spread of an exotic disease in prawns. It comes as a brawl breaks out between politicians over compensation for prawn farmers and trawler operators whose businesses have closed due to white spot disease. The disease has been found in a Logan River prawn farm, prompting the closure of it and two of the eight others nearby in the $88 million a year industry. A ban on fishing for crustaceans is already in place. Fisheries Minister Bill Byrne said no compensation would be paid but Logan River farmers and fishermen would have costs reimbursed for any work carried out under the direction of Biosecurity Queensland. Read the story here 19:46

Queensland fishers see red over fisheries management green paper

queenslandThe Queensland Government has put forward its vision for the future of the state’s fisheries amid industry concerns the most significant reforms in two decades are being stymied due to a lack of funds and political will. The Queensland Seafood Industry Association (QSIA) said the release of a green paper was a ‘longtime coming’ and lacked the technical and policy detail to address the regulatory reforms promised to commercial fishers. A comprehensive fisheries management review and report was completed in 2014 by independent consultants, M-RAG Asia Pacific, after consultation meetings at 20 ports around Queensland. Fisheries minister Leanne Donaldson has defended the delay in overhauling Queensland’s ‘cumbersome and inefficient’ fisheries management regime. Two audio clips, read the rest here 10:00

Queensland Seafood industry critical of WWF license grab, Every fisherman should be

negative__positive___wwf_panda_by_hpfil-d5mthkwQueensland Seafood Industry Association chief executive Eric Perez says the WWF is meddling in a heavily regulated industry that focuses on sustainable fishing. “They don’t have a point. They are trying to interfere with fisheries management by stealth,” Mr Perez told AAP. “They can’t force their way into regulating the industry the way they want to, so they get cashed up individuals with a green tinge or bent … which is a way to undermining us.” Mr Perez said the purchase of one, or even two, of the licences was not going to have an impact but if the WWF bought up more then eventually there would be repercussions. He said family businesses and micro businesses would be affected and Queenslander retailers would either have to buy fish from interstate or import more. Read the rest here 08:06

Commercial fishermen hit back at machine gun claims of Labor candidate for Wide Bay Lucy Stanton

Lucy Stanton, ALPQueensland Seafood Industry Association responds – It probably comes as no surprise to most that you (Lucy Stanton) are pinpointing your focus on net fishing operations in the federal electorate of Wide Bay that you are running for in Saturday’s election. It would seem that you are trying to appeal to voters on the back of the “net free zones” brought in by the Queensland State Labor Government last year. Like the State Labor policy, there is no scientific basis for any of your claims that ocean beach netters cause any harm to the environment. You may be interested in knowing that there are strict regulations set in place for ocean beach netters to legally and sustainably net fish on the North Shore beaches. Their main target over the winter months is mullet, which recreational fishers do not typically catch. It is a specifically targeted fish with limited bi-catch and proven to be sustainable. Your claims in the article are disappointing to say the least. It appears clear that you are trying to create hysteria in the hope of getting “airplay” for your own benefit in your election campaign. Read the response here 09:21

Tensions reach boiling point over net-free fishing zones

Tensions have reached boiling point in some fishing grounds along the Queensland coast, with one industry representative alleging guns have been drawn between commercial operators. “The Fisheries [Department] actually had to go to a place called Stanage Bay … and talk to some commercial operators up there because of movement of fishermen from one area to another; they’re actually starting to draw guns on each other,” Rockhampton fisherman and Queensland Seafood Industry Association director David Swindells said. “They’ve got rifles out threatening to shoot each other. These people are frightened of losing their livelihoods, so they’ve virtually taken matters into their own hands.” Read the rest here 08:24

Qld Parliament votes against motion to stop three net-free fishing zones

Adam and Kandi Kelly will be losing their licenceAn industry body has warned commercial fishers to be very afraid of the precedent Queensland parliament set last night, when it voted to continue with three net-free fishing zones. Queensland Seafood Industry Association (QSIA) deputy president Keith Harris said the government had made “an incredibly political” statement by supporting the net-free zones in Cairns, Mackay and Rockhampton. “They are saying to Queenslanders your rights do not matter, fisheries management do not matter and the exclusion of profitable and viable local small businesses do not matter,” Read the rest here 10:42

Fishing enthusiast says letterbox bombed over campaign to ban commercial netting

Judy Lynne, executive officer of recreational fishing group Sunfish, has been locked in a battle against commercial netters. She said her mailbox exploded in flames on Thursday night, on the eve of the State Government announcing three net-free zones. Ms Lynne, who was celebrating the anti-netting victory, said the timing of the bombing was suspect. Ms. Lynne said other Sunfish members had been victims of anonymous death threats and harassment as the campaign heated up. Read the rest here 20:27