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Seafood New Zealand

New Zealand's seafood industry plays a key role in the country's economy, contributing around $2 billion in export earnings and employing more than 16,500 people, who provide New Zealand and the world with high quality, nutritious and great tasting seafood.

Seafood New Zealand’s primarily focus is deepwater and inshore wild capture fisheries, but works closely with other sectors to ensure a thriving and sustainable seafood sector that is valued by New Zealanders and our trading partners.

The seafood industry is committed to providing high quality careers in local communities through our sustainable and innovative provision of safe seafood.

Seafood New Zealand Board

Greg Gent - Independent Chair
Geoff Burgess - Deepwater representative
Tony Hazlett - Deepwater representative
Doug Paulin - Deepwater representative
Craig Lawson - Inshore representative
Steve Tarrant - Inshore representative
Colin Williams - Inshore representative
Graeme Hastilow - Māori representative

Deepwater Council

The Deepwater Council represents quota owners of New Zealand deepwater fisheries.  This includes hake, hoki, jack mackerel, ling, orange roughy, oreo, scampi, southern blue whiting and squid.

Our role is to unite and assist quota owners to manage the sustainability of these wild fisheries in collaboration with government, scientists, and others to ensure New Zealand’s deepwater fisheries resources are managed to optimise their long-term sustainable yields.

Inshore Council

The Inshore Coucil works to advance interests in inshore finfish, pelagic and tuna fisheries. We ensure that New Zealand gains the maximum economic yields from its inshore fisheries resources, managed within a long-term sustainable framework.

Our mission is to provide dynamic and transparent leadership, inform decision making and actively engage with our members, officials and other stakeholders. 

We represent participants in New Zealand’s major inshore commercial fisheries, including snapper, blue cod, bluenose, tarakihi, warehou, gurnard, rig, blue moki, flounder, hapuka (groper), trevally, flatfish, school shark and John dory and Coromandel scallops. Tuna and pelagic fishers catch southern blue fin tuna, skipjack tuna, albacore, kahawai and mackerels. Members of Fisheries Inshore New Zealand own more than 51% of the quota in 192 fish-stocks and between 40% and 51% in a further 13 fish-stocks.

Our Sector Entities

Aquaculture New Zealand

Aquaculture New Zealand is a small, dedicated team of professionals passionate about supporting the sustainable growth of aquaculture in New Zealand and proudly representing our marine farmers. 

New Zealand Rock Lobster Industry Council

The NZ Rock Lobster Industry Council (NZ RLIC) is the nationally representative organisation for the New Zealand rock lobster industry.  It is the umbrella organisation for nine commercial stakeholder organisations operating in each of the rock lobster management areas in New Zealand. These regional groups are known as CRAMACs and each appoint a director to the NZ RLIC Board who in turn appoint an independent chairperson.  CRAMAC membership comprises the full range of lobster industry participants from the catching sector and quota share owners through to processing and exporting.  The NZ RLIC and CRAMACs are funded by way of a Rock Lobster Commodity Levy established in 2013.

NZ RLIC represents the rock lobster industry in all aspects of New Zealand rock lobster fisheries management including policy, regulatory and operational matters.  The NZ RLIC has an affiliated rock lobster exporters group - LENZ – and maintains collaborations with the Paua Industry Council, Fisheries Inshore New Zealand, Aquaculture New Zealand, and Seafood New Zealand. The NZ RLIC maintains strong links to lobster industry organisations and agencies in Australia.

Since 1997 the NZ RLIC has been the principal rock lobster stock monitoring and stock assessment research provider to the Ministry for Primary Industries and also undertakes a range of elective research initiatives including marine biotoxins, biosecurity, animal husbandry and protected species interactions.

NZ RLIC seeks to achieve ecologically sustainable harvest of rock lobsters and to enable an efficient and profitable industry; to play a significant role in research and management, and to deliver cultural and social value to customary and recreational fishers.

Paua Industry Council

The Paua Industry Council Ltd is the national umbrella service agency for the five regional commercial stakeholder groups representing commercial paua fishery interests. Each regional representative group (PauaMAC - derived from the Quota Management System designation for paua, and Management Area Council) draws its membership and mandate from fishing and non-fishing quota owners, ACE holders, permit holders, processors and exporters from within the main seven designated management areas. The paua industry is designed as a "bottom up" driven organisational structure, with decision making primarily resting with individual quota owners and dive crews. Its organisations' primary aims are firstly to work to ensure the health of the New Zealand paua fisheries and secondly to act as advocate for its members interests.

The paua industry is a small but important export earner for New Zealand at around $57m per annum in recent years.

Our Subsidiaries

Commercial Fisheries Services (Fishserve)

Fishserve was established in 1999 to ensure the independent provision of services to the NZ commercial fishing industry. It supports the seafood sector in meeting statutory obligations under the 1996 Fisheries Act.

There are two mechanisms in which Fishserve deliver these services. The first is a contract to the Ministry for Primary Industries. Examples of services delivered under this contract include issuing fishing permits, collecting daily fishing information, and managing fishing quota allocations.

Fishserve is also the appointed Approved Service Delivery Organisation (ASDO). As the ASDO Fishserve has direct accountability to the Minister for all functions and duties transferred to it. These service functions include vessel and GPR registrations, and Annual Catch Entitlement (ACE) management.

Fishserve has its own subsidiary – Fishserve Innovations NZ Ltd (FINNZ), which specialises in providing value add services, primarily in software design and data management. Profits made by the subsidiary are used to offset the cost of statutory services for the industry.

For more information vist the FishServe website or the FINNZ website.

Seafood Innovations Limited

Seafood Innovations Limited (SIL) is a research and development programme specifically for the seafood industry, with the aim of adding value to the sector.  It has been 50:50 funded by industry and the Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment.  SIL's mission has been to:

  • Increase the value of existing harvests; or reduce harvesting and processing costs; or enhance consumer-driven product attributes.
  • Generate outcomes that provide the potential for a significant step forward for the industry.

Whilst SIL is currently not seeking applications for new R&D projects, since SIL's inception in 2004, it has co-funded over 100 research projects and continues to monitor several projects that are still underway.

For more information about SIL, visit the SIL website.