Dob in a mate to promote WA seafood
WAFIC is keen to showcase members of our industry, but has found to date that many are reluctant to self-promote. So we here at the offices have decided to establish a Dob-in-a-mate initiative that will be included in each Newsletter. The person who is profiled in each Newsletter has the responsibility to nominate, or “Dob-in”, another fisher, processor, wholesaler or retailer for the next edition. To kick off the series this month we have Steve Davies who is pictured here (above left) with his old mate Ned “Bulla” David.
How old are you and where do you work?
I am 40 and work at Marine Produce Australia which produces Cone Bay Ocean Barramundi in The Kimberley region.
How did you get into the seafood industry?
Both my father and my grandfather were professional fishers out of my hometown of Port Lincoln in South Australia so it was a natural progression for me to follow in their wake. I worked on the deck of a Spencer Gulf prawn trawler under my old man for many years until he retired, after which I worked in a dual capacity as Skipper/Engineer. In the off seasons I worked on the family oyster farm in Coffin Bay, purse seine fishing for sardines and tuna, and also tuna farming. I moved to Western Australia four years ago so my wife could be closer to her family and then took up a role with Marine Produce Australia.
How long have you worked in your current position?
What do you love about your job?
Our farm sits in the heart of the Kimberley and is inaccessible by road with the only way in being chopper or boat. It is an incredibly beautiful and wild frontier and I love visiting the region. It is exciting to be part of a progressive company which employs wholly unique production methods for Barramundi in Australia and in a way which retains environmental sustainability and social responsibility at its core. My days are quite diverse and my job affords me the opportunity to be in the office in Perth one day and on a boat in the middle of the Kimberley the next. I learn something new every day, and I get to eat the world’s tastiest fish.
Have you got a favourite moment from the sea?
At sea you get to see things not many people get to see – sunfish, orcas, weird weather systems – but a standout experience amongst many would have to be seeing dolphins swimming through bioluminescence at the bow of the boat on moonless nights. All you see is a fluorescent outline of the dolphins in a black sea.
What’s the strangest thing you’ve caught at sea?
A decrepit looking $50 note off of Wallaroo.
Who inspires you?
My wife, my family, my friends and my seven year old kelpie Dude.
What other thoughts do you have about the seafood industry generally?
I am a passionate advocate for the Australian seafood industry generally. We have a wonderful history of responsible development and subsequent management stretching back decades and we produce seafood of the highest quality. Discerning Australian consumers know this, but as it stands right now they are faced with a food service industry in which they can’t choose to support this fantastic industry. I support a free market, but it is high time seafood labelling legislation is adopted which creates a food service retail environment in which the consumer can make a clear and informed choice as to what they choose to eat and who they choose to support.
What’s your favourite seafood?
Fresh home cooked crispy skinned Cone Bay Ocean Barramundi.