8 June 2016 is World Oceans Day and the Australian Fisheries Management Authority (AFMA) is encouraging people to celebrate everything that our oceans bring to the Australian community, including a healthy supply of fresh, and importantly, sustainable seafood and abundant recreational fishing opportunities.
Across our nation and in many regional communities, fishing plays a significant and growing part of many people’s lives.
Figures from the Australian Bureau of Agriculture and Resource Economics and Sciences (ABARES) indicate that the Gross Value of Production, which is the value of total Commonwealth commercial catch, increased to over $400 million in the 2015-16 financial year, an increase of 20 percent in just two years.
This comes on the back of the ABARES fishery status reports which indicate that no fishery solely managed by the Commonwealth was subject to overfishing for the second year in a row.
AFMA’s CEO, Dr James Findlay, said Australians can be proud of our fisheries.
“Our science-based management approach, strict enforcement program and sustainable catch limits help ensure that seafood from our sustainable Commonwealth fisheries will be here for current and future generations to enjoy,” Dr Findlay said.
“I encourage everyone to support our local fishing industry and tuck into some fresh, sustainably caught Australian seafood.
“A great variety of versatile fish like blue grenadier, flathead and gummy shark (flake) are in good supply in local fish shops around the country, following great fishing seasons for all of these species.”
Science-based management of commercial fishing also means healthy fish stocks so that this shared resource can be enjoyed by all, and continue to support our recreational and charter fishing industries that play a significant role in Australian tourism.