Following the recent national crisis meeting in Fremantle to discuss the ongoing threats to resource access and property rights across the nation, Seafood Industry Australia (SIA) has announced membership of its Resource Security Task Force.
The task force will address the constant erosion of access and the devaluation and destabilisation this brings to the Australian seafood industry.
It will develop a national strategy and actions to promote resource security. Our wild-catch and aquaculture sectors already provide one billion meals a year, and we want to grow this to 1.5 billion meals. The absence of secure access to resources, both aquatic and terrestrial, is a major impediment to the confidence and growth of the Australian seafood industry.
Improving security is critical to providing an environment that encourages innovation and the confidence to invest and work in our industry.
We cannot sit back and watch our industry, which supports over 25,000 families, be compromised on an issue as crucial as access to resources.
With the Federal election just around the corner, we have grave concerns about Labor’s confirmation that they will introduce their 2012 Commonwealth Marine Park Management Plans if elected.
This will be a massive blow for our industry as we have fought long and hard to see the more balanced approach of the Coalition pass through Federal Parliament.
We have had enough of the ongoing and widespread government interventions, review and reform processes that bring with them increased uncertainty for the future of our industry, the thousands of Australians who are employed by the industry, and the millions more who enjoy fresh, sustainable, healthy Australian seafood.
As fishers, our priority is the environment. We will continue to advocate the health, sustainability and future of our ocean and land-based aquaculture activities. It’s our livelihood and the future livelihood of generations to come.
SIA looks forward to working with governments, the community and industry to establish a strong and productive path forward.
Jane Lovell is the inaugural CEO of Seafood Industry Australia, the national peak body which represents the Australian seafood industry. A scientist by training, Jane has also worked in horticultural export, in the fisheries portfolio in the Australian Federal Parliament, for small businesses and for large multi-national corporations. She was inaugural Managing Director of TQA Australia, a not-for-profit concerned with food safety, quality and environmental assurance in primary industry. In this role, she worked with a range of seafood businesses, from aquaculture to processing and assisted the Tasmanian oyster industry develop and implement its own food safety and quality assurance system. Jane holds qualifications in corporate governance, leadership and has recently completed her Masters examining issues associated with the global governance of food security.