Western rock lobsters will be readily available for Western Australians to enjoy as local supply is boosted to the public and hospitality industry through back of boat sales.
The WA Government has amended legislation to allow commercial rock lobster fishers to sell up to 100 lobsters per day directly from the back of boat to supply local restaurants, fresh fish retailers and the public.
This is one of several changes sought by the peak industry body, Western Rock Lobster, in response to the dramatic decline in export demand for western rock lobster as a result of COVID-19.
In March 2020, the WA Government announced a rescue plan to support the industry after it was one of the first to face significant financial impacts resulting from loss of trade to China.
The Government has worked closely with the industry to implement the changes to keep the boats fishing, maintain local employment and minimise the economic fallout from the pandemic. Previously about 95 per cent of product was exported to China.
Other changes include extending the current season to 18 months, bringing forward a proportion of the 2021 season quota and introducing new measures to minimise the likelihood of whale interactions.
Source: WA Government