22 July 2013
SEAFOOD SERVICES AUSTRALIA CLOSES ITS DOORS
Seafood Services Australia (SSA) today announces that it will cease trading and close its doors. This decision has only been arrived at after long and serious consideration by the Board and its members.
Over the past five years there has been a significant reduction in the availability of funding for all primary production industries. This has impacted on SSA’s future revenue stream and played a significant role in the SSA Board’s decision to put in place the processes to deregister the company while still in a position to ensure current commitments and obligations are met.
Under these circumstances the goal of the SSA Board has been to leave a strong legacy for the seafood industry and its stakeholders. It has put in place a process to transition remaining projects and intellectual assets to an organisation that will see them completed and available in the future.
There are four FRDC funded projects which the SSA Board is “returning” to the FRDC:
2013/023 Develop a draft Australian Standard for Responsible Fishing on vessels to improve public perception of the commercial fishing industry
2012/209 Develop and promote the Australian Fish Names Standard (AS-SSA 5300) and ensure reaccreditation as a Standards Development Organisation
2012/211 Securing Trade & Market Access for the Australian Seafood Industry
2012/500 Establishing and operating a forum (Common Language Group) for the Australian seafood industry and its stakeholders to reach agreement on sustainability issues contentious in the fishing and aquaculture sectors.
The FRDC has committed to finding alternative project management arrangements such that these projects remain active and outputs available to stakeholders.
Additionally there are other services that SSA has delivered in the past which are unlikely to be continued due to the apparent lack of organisations with capability or funding to fill the role. These past services include managing the Seafood Incident Response Plan, providing technical advice to Codex and other trade forums.
SSA was established in 2001 by the Fisheries Research and Development Corporation and the Australian seafood industry as a non-profit organisation. SSA’s goal was to enhance the profitability, international competitiveness, sustainability and resilience of the Australian seafood industry.
It is clear that SSA has delivered a number of key achievements over the past decade – these are outlined at the end of this release. These have been made possible by SSA’s dedicated staff and its many partners.
The Board would like to acknowledge the support received from the Fisheries Research and Development Corporation, the Australian Seafood CRC, Seafood Experience Australia (SEA), National Aquaculture Council (NAC), Sydney Fish Market, Western Australia Fishing Industry Council (WAFIC), Aquaculture Council of Western Australia and seafood industry bodies, governments and numerous other partners over the past twelve years.
Seafood Services Board of Directors
Geoff Gorrie (Chairman)
Pheroze Jungalwalla (Deputy Chair)
- Aquaculture Council of Western Australia Inc.
- National Aquaculture Council
- Seafood Experience Australia
- Sydney Fish Market
- Western Australia Fishing Industry Council
SSA Key Supporter’s alliances include:
- Fisheries Research and Development Corporation
- Australian Seafood Industry Peak Bodies and d Industry members
- Commonwealth and State Government agencies
- Australian Seafood Cooperative Research Centre
- Standards Australia
SEAFOOD SERVICES ACHIEVEMENTS
- Over $7.316 million in investment into seafood industry development initiatives. This represents a leverage of an additional $3.066 million over the $4.250 million invested by FRDC over this period.
- Established and coordinated the operations of the Seafood Trade and Market Access Forum (SMAAT) to provide an inclusive and transparent mechanism to identify, prioritise and action critical trade and market access issues faced by the Australian seafood industry.
- Established and maintained the SSA online Seafood Trade and Market Access Database, in collaboration with the Australian Seafood CRC and SARDI, to provide industry and government with up-to-date technical data and other critical information on the trade and market access requirements of Australia’s key seafood trading partners.
- SSA has achieved and maintained its accreditation as a national Standards Development Organisation (SDO) under the stringent requirements of ABSDO and Standards Australia. SSA is currently the only SDO in Australia with seafood industry standards development capacity and one of only five SDOs in Australia.
- Developed and maintained the Australia Fish Names Standard and Fish Names Brand Scheme as the definitive document on common and scientific names for seafood. This first seafood industry standard has resolved the confusion that previously existed over the marketing names of seafood.
- Developed and maintained the online Fish Names Database to successfully extend the Fish Names Standard nationally and internationally. This free to access database is now utilised by the scientific community and seafood wholesalers, retailers and consumers in clarifying the marketing and scientific names of seafood.
- SSA developed and refined the National Seafood Incident Response Plan (SIRP), providing for a more structured approach to industry responsiveness and developing easy to use documentation to be utilised in the coordination, recording and tracking of seafood incidents.
- Under the National Seafood Industry Environmental Management Systems (EMS) program, SSA introduced, updated and continued to extend its EMS resources to those industry groups keen to develop their own environmental management system.
Chairman – Seafood Services Australia
M: 0419 628 873