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Celebrations Of Lobster Industry Co-operative

AUSTRALIA - Fisheries Minister Norman Moore joined fishermen to mark the 60th anniversary of the Geraldton Fishermens Co-operative (GFC) receiving its first consignment of rock lobsters for processing.

Mr Moore said that since its inception, the GFC had become internationally associated with the State’s valuable western rock lobster fishery.

“Just as Western Australia’s lobsters have gained an international reputation for coming from a sustainable fishery, the GFC’s Brolos brand is similarly well-respected,” he said.

“GFC has become a major stakeholder in a fishery that has changed significantly, since the first lobster was delivered to the processing company in April 1951. This co-operative came about because fishermen wanted a better return for their catch. The GFC has sought more ways to add value to the product ever since.”

The Minister congratulated the company for its ongoing success at a special re-enactment of the first lobster consignment in Geraldton today. The company also unveiled a new website and promotional DVD.

“Compared to the early days of its operations, when freezer boats processed lobster at sea, the majority of western rock lobsters handled by GFC are exported live to overseas markets,” Mr Moore said.

The Minister said the move to a quota system this season was designed to provide more opportunity for the industry to meet the issues of supply and demand and maximise economic return.

“Processors, like the GFC, will benefit from the greater flexibility a quota system brings to the supply of live lobsters,” he said. “I am pleased to hear reports that some fishers averaged a better price this season than they would have under the previous system.

“I expect WA’s rock lobster fishery will be even better placed when the transition to a quota system with full transferability and electronic catch monitoring is completed.”

the Fish Site Editor

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