HATCHING A NEW PLAN FOR NATIVE FISH STOCKS

Victorians can be more confident of catching a native fish when they wet a line at lakes and waterways around the state with a re-elected Andrews Labor Government to boost Victorian fish stocks with a new hatchery at Shepparton.

We said we would get more people fishing in Victoria more often, and we have.

The Andrews Labor Government has increased fish stocking to five million fish a year across the state, banned netting in Port Phillip Bay, Corio Bay and river mouths in the Gippsland Lakes, opened up new fishing spots and helped support Victorian fishing clubs.

Our fishing industry is booming but Victoria is buying around four million fish a year from interstate suppliers to supplement the close to 1.7 million fish bred at Victoria’s existing Snobs Creek hatchery each year.

Only Labor will ensure Victoria’s fishing industry is independent and not reliant on importing fish stocks from New South Wales, with $7 million to build a new native fish hatchery in Shepparton.

The region’s warmer climate will allow the new hatchery to focus on breeding popular warm water native species such as Murray cod and golden perch.

This will create local jobs and guarantee fish stocking levels with native fish bred in Victoria.

More than 830,000 Victorians enjoy recreational fishing and the industry employs more than 16,000 Victorians, with many in regional areas.

Instead of growing recreational fishing in Victoria, the Liberals tried to cut half of the jobs at Victoria’s Fisheries Research Branch at Queenscliff when they were last in government.

Only Labor will grow recreational fishing, to create jobs and get more people enjoying the health and relaxation benefits of dropping a line, with plenty of fish to catch.

Quotes attributable to Minister for Agriculture Jaala Pulford

“This new hatchery will create local jobs and mean we can breed the fish we need right here in Victoria.”

“Victorians love to fish and only Labor’s commitment to boost local native fish production will make sure everyone who wets a line around the state has the best chance of getting a great catch.”