Albany shellfish aquaculture expanded

The WA Fisheries Minister has announced a program to boost aquaculture production along the south coast, with the release of sub-licences for the second stage of the Albany Aquaculture Development Zone.

The current zone is operated by Harvest Road Oceans, and it is hoped the release of sub-licences will encourage new rock oyster operators into the zone.

As part of the expansion, the government has invested $1.3 million into identifying and establishing aquaculture development zones along the south coast of Western Australia.

Aquaculture development zones provide ‘investment-ready’ platforms for large scale aquaculture operators, with environmental approvals and management frameworks already in place.

Stage one of the Albany Zone was announced in August 2020, covering 500 hectares in the Oyster Harbour area. Stage two, covering around 310 hectares of Princess Royal Harbour and King George Sound combined, was declared in December 2021.

At full capacity, the Albany Zone is expected to produce around 1500 tones of shellfish at an estimated value of $30 million per year, creating more than 200 direct jobs.