AUSTRALIA - Interested stakeholders and the community are encouraged to have their say on a draft management plan for the commercial Spencer Gulf Prawn Fishery.
Minister for Fisheries Gail Gago said the consultation period, open until Friday, 10 January 2014, would provide the community with an important opportunity to contribute to future management arrangements for South Australia’s valuable Spencer Gulf Prawn Fishery.
“The draft plan outlines strategic policy frameworks that have been developed to ensure the ecologically sustainable development of the Spencer Gulf Prawn Fishery over the next five years,” Ms Gago said.
“Spencer Gulf Prawns are a leader in South Australia’s premium seafood offering, providing South Australians with locally sourced, sustainable seafood of the highest quality.
“The Spencer Gulf Prawn Fishery is the first prawn fishery in the Asia Pacific region to gain the prestigious Marine Stewardship Council certification, an independent environmental accreditation that rewards sustainable fishing practices.
“It’s important that we maintain this standard so we can continue producing the highly sought after seafood South Australia is renowned for.
“This public consultation period allows the community to provide considered input into the future management of this fishery.”
The fishery, with a gross value of production of around $30.3 million in 2010-11, is one of three Prawn fisheries that operate in South Australia, with the Spencer Gulf Prawn Fishery operating in the waters of Spencer Gulf. The fishery targets King Prawns and is also permitted to harvest Balmain Bugs and Southern Calamari.
Minister Gago acknowledged the efforts of the Fisheries Council of South Australia in overseeing the preparation of the draft plan, along with the contribution provided by the Spencer Gulf and West Coast Prawn Fishermen’s Association.
PIRSA Fisheries and Aquaculture will be holding public meetings in Adelaide and Port Lincoln as part of its public consultation on the draft management plan, which has been developed as required under the Fisheries Management Act 2007.
The meetings will be held at the following locations:
• Adelaide – 14 November 2013, 4pm, Level 14, 25 Grenfell St, Meeting Rooms 1&2
• Port Lincoln – 18 November 2013, 4pm, Port Lincoln Hotel, Flinders Room
Responses to the draft Management Plan for the South Australian Commercial Spencer Gulf Prawn Fishery must be provided in writing by 5pm Friday, 10 January 2014.
Copies of the draft plans, summary reports, draft risk assessment report, public meeting dates and response forms can found on the Fisheries Council website: www.fisheriescouncil.sa.gov.au
TheFishSite News Desk