We believe that all fish for human consumption should be farmed. Aquaculture is the most feasible solution to the problem of providing seafood products for ever increasing market demand and shrinking supply of wild fish stocks. It provides a consistent and reliable source of high quality, fresh seafood that is nutritious, and safe to eat. Aquaculture is an environmentally responsible alternative to fishing. Traditional methods of bringing seafood products to market, such as wild catch, are rapidly becoming obsolete, and are no longer able to meet current market needs.
The Murray Cod is an Australian icon. This legendary native fish is recognised for its superior taste, texture, colour and fat content. It is also visually similar to several premium Asian fish species. Due to these attributes, Murray Cod is accepted as a premium table fish in Australia and in selected Asian target markets. Being an accepted premium fish species, with a demand-supply gap is extremely important, as it means that Murray Cod products can command a higher price in the marketplace. In Asian markets this is reinforced by Australia’s image of producing high quality, sustainable food products.
In recent years, there has been considerable interest in the grow-out of Murray cod to satisfy ever increasing market demand. Farmed Murray cod is considered premium product when compared to other well-known farmed species. There is considerable scope for further sales of Murray cod within Australia since farmed Murray cod has been well received in high-end restaurants in both Melbourne and Sydney. The development of export markets is also the long-term goal for the Australian Murray cod aquaculture industry. Exports of Murray cod have already occurred to many Asian countries, with the responses overall being positive.
Domestic market evaluations undertaken in north-western Victoria provided positive consumer feedback and resulted in regular orders of product from selected restaurants. Export market evaluations in the form of surveys and taste tasting events were conducted in several Asian countries including Malaysia, Singapore, Japan, Thailand, Hong Kong, Indonesia and South Korea. Murray Cod was well received in all these countries and there was a preference for whole and filleted fish with quality and reliability of supply being important considerations for buyers. Short term export demand estimates ranged from hundreds of tonnes p.a. in the short term up to 500–1000 tonnes p.a. in the 5–10 year range.
The aquaculture method of choice for this project is Recirculating Aquaculture System (RAS). We are deploying RAS because other "conventional" aquaculture methods, such as outdoor pond systems, net pen and other natural water body lease based systems, are not sustainable in the long term, due to significant environmental issues and their inability to guarantee the safety of their products to the customer. Conversely, indoor fish production using RAS is sustainable, infinitely expandable, environmentally compatible, and has the ability to guarantee both the safety and quality of the fish produced throughout the year.
Murray cod are well established aquaculture species with a relatively stable price and expanding market. There is excellent road access from the project site to Wollongong, Sydney and Canberra markets. We will tap into the local distribution channels and expertise to help us leverage of the well-developed local oyster industry’s success.
Currently most farmed Murray Cod are sold on the Australian domestic market. We are looking to Eat Asia as a potential market for expansion of production.
The company is createdJuly 2014
Trial Recirculating Aquaculture System to grow Murray Cod to plate size is installed.Early 2015
The trial RAS is fully operational and stocked with fingerlingsJuly 2015
Co-founders acquire land on the South Coast of NSW, Australia for future expansion of aquaculture operationsDecember 2016
The company (ALL T&A CONSULTING PTY LTD trading as iAqua) has successfully applied for a grant with the Australian Commonwealth Department of Industry, Innovation & Science, under the Regional Jobs and Investment Packages program.February 2018
Project implementation phase beginsAugust 2018
Groundwater bore drilling and testing completedOctober 2018
Development application is lodged with the Shoalhaven City CouncilApril 2019
Aquaculture facility construction commencesAugust 2019
RAS is stocked with fingerlings. Production beginsJune 2020
Operations reach full capacity. First produce is shipped to marketsMarch 2021
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