Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister for Agriculture, Senator Richard Colbeck, today released the Australian Bureau of Agricultural and Resource Economics and Sciences (ABARES) Fishery Status Reports 2012. The report assesses the status of all 93 Commonwealth fish stocks. Senator Colbeck said, “What this report shows us is that our fisheries are undeniably sustainable and our science-based management practices continue to improve. The ABARES report is a clear endorsement of Australia’s science-based fishing industry and shows that previous attacks on the industry were unwarranted. The numbers were an improvement on the previous ABARES report. When Australian families buy fish from a well-managed and sustainable fishery, they know they are getting the best. Australian fisheries are recognised as being among the best managed in the world”.
ABARES report on the South East Trawl Fishery (SETF) is that there were only positive changes in the status of SETF stocks. The status of gulper sharks, pink ling, eastern orange roughy and ribaldo all improved. The 2012 report shows that only a single stock in the trawl fishery, eastern gemfish, remains subject to overfishing. Trawl fishermen have worked hard to reduce the incidental catch of eastern gemfish to record lows to allow it to rebuild.