The NSW wild harvest commercial fishing industry is a dynamic network of skilled businesses. Commercial fishers, wholesalers, processors and retailers, work together with the restaurant and catering industry to supply fresh seafood to communities across the State, as well as to interstate and overseas markets.
The seafood industry, which includes aquaculture and oyster farmers is a vibrant industry which generates over half a billion dollars of economic activity each year, employing more than 4,000 people. Of this, the wild harvest commercial fishing managed under NSW jurisdiction is worth more than $90 million dollars at first point of sale.
The health benefits of seafood are well known and the industry is rising to the challenge of ensuring that fresh seafood is available not just along the coast, but throughout NSW.
The NSW commercial fisheries are carefully managed. The resource is shared amongst over 1,000 commercial fishers who catch fish for the whole community to enjoy. The industry has recognised the challenges in making fisheries sustainable and has led many of the changes introduced to improve environmental performance.
The NSW fishing industry is primarily made up of small family businesses that rely on high levels of local knowledge and skills learnt over many generations. These businesses use some of the most environmentally sound technology available, such as world leading by-catch reduction devices, and operate under stringent controls regarding their fishing times, seasons and equipment. The industry is constantly striving to improve its environmental performance and contributes millions of dollars each year to research and compliance programs.
The clean and green reputation of the whole NSW seafood industry depends on fisheries being viable, profitable and sustainable. The industry underpins the economy of many coastal towns providing wealth and employment in places, and at times of the year, where there is little other economic activity.
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