LIVE wild harvested eels from the Coffs Coast will soon be shipped to China.
Coffs Harbour's Professional Fishermen's Association received a $109,225 grant from the Federal Government to conduct an 18 month feasibility study of shipping eels overseas.
"This grant is part of the Australian Government's $13.8 million Farm Co-operatives and Collaboration Pilot Program-an investment in giving farmers the skills and resources to take greater control of the supply chain for their goods,” Federal Member for Cowper, Luke Hartsuyker said.
"The Professional Fishermen's Association project is a prime example of this, as they investigate how eel fishers can work together to cost-effectively send consolidated shipments of live eels to China.
"Individual eel fishers currently rely on an exporter to sell their product to Chinese importers and have no direct knowledge and understanding of the Asian market where 90% of their product current goes.
"They will now be able to conduct market research to determine opportunities for Australian wild caught eels in China, including consumer demand patterns, competitor analysis, channel and supply chain partner identification, and product formats.
"They will seek to target the emerging consumer class in China who are looking for clean green and healthy seafood products, and provide greater stability for the industry and ensure long term profitability for individual businesses.”
The Farm Co-operatives and Collaboration Pilot Program is being delivered by the Southern Cross University on behalf of the Australian Government.