Hon Don Punch BPsych BSocwk MBA MLA

Hon Don Punch BPsych BSocwk MBA MLA

Minister for Disability Services; Fisheries; Seniors and Ageing; Small Business

    WA’s commercial fishing industry honours its champions

    13/08/2021 7:30 PM
    • Twelve category winners named in most popular Seafood Industry Awards ever
    • Champions to represent WA in next year's National Seafood Awards
    • Western Australia confirmed as the foremost fishing State in Australia  

    The achievements and the value of WA's seafood industry to the local economy and community have been showcased at the 2021 Seafood Industry Awards held tonight in Fremantle. The Awards, hosted by the WA Fishing Industry Council, provide due recognition for the industry's work in supplying some of the finest seafood in the world to local, national and international markets.


    The WA seafood industry generates a billion dollars for the State's economy annually and employs about 10,000 people in direct and indirect jobs connected to commercial fishing and aquaculture activity.


    The Leadership Award for Dr George Kailis confirms his status as a guiding light of growth and innovation for the industry in WA and commitment to sustainable fisheries practices around the world.


    From Dunsborough's Blue Manna Bistro winning the Seafood Restaurant Award, Ocean and Paddock in Albany as best Small Business and the best Large Business nod to Seafresh Group for its fine fish markets around Perth, both city and regional business were honoured. 


    Carnarvon's Abacus Fisheries landed the R&D award for a new crab pot design to increase efficiency and reduce waste. Austral Fisheries earned the Environment Award for showing the way with net zero greenhouse gas emissions and a new carbon neutral fishing vessel, and Tanya Adams is the champion behind WAFIC's Safety Code to make fishing safer.     


    The People Development Award in 2021 honours Women in Seafood Australasia for building diversification in the industry, while Shark Bay Prawn Trawler Operator's Association won praise for lifting the public profile of fishing. The work ethic of Thomas Breeze on an octopus fishing vessel that operates out of Two Rocks made him best deckhand.      


    This year's champions, whether working along the supply chain or to support the industry, are not afraid to lift the standards for fishing and production practices to new heights, including Seafood Producer Award winner Ben Pethick who skippers F.V. Bowithick and is in high demand across Australia.


    Award winners from 11 of the 12 categories will go on to represent WA at the National Seafood Awards in 2022, with the WA-only Deckhand Award recognising and rewarding the contributions and achievements of those at the coal-face of the industry.


    Comments attributed to Fisheries Minister Don Punch:


    "This year's dynamic dozen of winning companies and individuals have been honoured for keeping WA on the front foot in fishing, aquaculture and our seafood supply chain.


    "Just last month, the Australian Institute of Marine Science Index of Marine Industry considered WA to be the foremost fishing State in Australia and for that we say thanks to the hard-working men and women who've put us there.


    "Fishing and aquaculture businesses in WA worked hard through the economic impacts of COVID-19 and the awards celebrated the continued professionalism, commitment and ingenuity of the seafood industry through challenging times."


    Minister's office - 6552 6900


    Seafood Restaurant AwardEndeavour FoodsBlue Manna BistroConsistently serving customers with quality seafood
    Seafood Industry Producer AwardDepartment of Primary Industries and Regional DevelopmentBen Pethick - Fishing Vessel BowithickExcellence in sustainable production, through innovation in fishing or aquaculture practices
    Seafood Business (Large) AwardBaker RefrigerationSeafresh GroupA business from in the seafood supply chain with ten or more staff and contributing to a positive public profile
    Seafood Business (Small) AwardFrancis A JonesOcean and PaddockA business with less than 10 full-time staff showing growth, excellence, innovation and a positive public profile
    Safety AwardSea HarvestTanya AdamsContributes to improving safety in the seafood industry
    Research, Development and Extension AwardWestern Rock Lobster CouncilAbacus Fisheries Company Pty LtdExcellent research and development work leading to activity aimed at improving both sustainability and profit
    Environment AwardWoodside EnergyAustral Fisheries Reducing adverse seafood industry environmental impact
    Highly commended in the Environment Award category Latitude Jewellers - Flotsam & Jetsam
    The Fisherman's Daughter
    People Development AwardWestern Rock Lobster CouncilWomen in Seafood AustralasiaBuilding a better workforce through people development
    Seafood Industry Promotion AwardAustral FisheriesShark Bay Prawn Trawler Operator's AssociationContributed substantially towards improving the public profile of seafood and/or the commercial seafood industry
    Young Achievers AwardWard PackagingManue DanielsUnder 35 and making a positive difference to the industry
    Highly commended in the Young Achievers category Morgan Hand 
    Michael & Patricia Kailis Leadership AwardMG KailisDr George KailisHas made a positive and substantial difference to the WA seafood industry over at least 20 years
    Deckhand Award (a WA‑only award)Fins SeafoodThomas BreezeShows ongoing passion, work ethic and commitment