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NSW Oyster industry plans for the future

NSW Oyster farmers and experts will discuss plans to double the value of the industry at the 2015 NSW Oyster Field Day and Tradeshows next week in Old Bar and Merimbula.

After weathering storm damage in the Hunter and North Coast, the industry is aiming to build on recent production growth and continue to provide the best tasting oysters for consumers.

Oyster Strategy Steering Committee North Chair and Manning River based oyster farmer, Ian Crisp said attendees would be able to have their say about the NSW Oyster Industry Development Strategy being developed with the support of the Fisheries Research and Development Corporation.

'The oyster industry make up the state's most valuable seafood sector, and plays a significant role in protecting water quality in our estuaries,' Mr Crisp said.

'Sydney Rock Oyster production alone increased by two million dollars last year; that is a trend the industry wants to continue.'

The steering committee will use the two events as an opportunity to review strategies for target growth and determine how they can achieve them, with the support from oyster farmers across the state. This includes:

  • streamlining the shellfish program for food safety
  • access to high performing oyster spat
  • effective industry governance
  • lease productivity
  • access to capital for development.

'The field days are also a chance for growers to network, view trade displays, learn the latest advances in technology and take part in the 'most beautiful un-opened oyster competition,' said Estuary and Marine Officer, Brian Hughes from Hunter Local Land Services, organiser of the North Coast field day and tradeshow.

'Hunter Local Land Services will have support workers on site to provide advice to growers affected by recent storms and flooding in the Hunter and North Coast,' Mr Hughes said.

The NSW Oyster Field Day and Tradeshows will take place at: 

25-26 May - Club Old Bar, 1 Belford Street, Old Bar

28-29 May - Pambula Merimbula Golf Club, Merimbula

The 2015 NSW Oyster Field Day and Tradeshows are supported by the NSW Farmers' Association, NSW Department of Primary Industries and NSW Food Authority.

Further details are available at: www.lls.nsw.gov.au/hunter

ENDS

Media contact: Jillian Ayre - tel 02 4938 4932 or Brent Blackburn – tel 4224 9718.