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    Fish & Seafood Industry

    trends impacting our fish and seafood industry

    Who doesn’t love the sweetness of a juicy prawn or lobster, or the delicate flavour of fresh fish? Thankfully, both Australia and New Zealand are countries surrounded by beautiful oceans teeming with fish and seafood. However, our fish and seafood industry is experiencing challenges and changing consumer behaviour, just as in other food industries.

    That’s why at FPE, we aim to support our customers with more than just food processing equipment. We provide comprehensive support and a wealth of experience from 4 decades of being in business. Read on to learn about the factors currently impacting our seafood and fish industry and what we can do as food processors to adapt.

    Overview

    Australian seafood industry statistics

    • Seafood is popular among Aussies: Australian consumers rated seafood as their fourth favourite meat, behind beef, pork and poultry but higher than sheep or lamb (source)
    • And we eat a lot of it: Roughly 12.4 kg in 2019-2020 per person (source)
    • We want it fresh and safe: A survey in 2019 found that price was not the key driver of seafood consumption. Consumers identified that freshness and food safety were more important (source)
    • The past 5 years have been hard but things are looking up: The seafood processing industry experienced a decline but is projected to grow over the next five years, as demand recovers from the downturn attributable to the COVID-19 pandemic (source). In fact, the Australian seafood industry is said to be returning to a 20 year high in 2022 (source).

    New Zealand seafood industry statistics

    • Seafood is a strong export: The New Zealand seafood industry had a total export earning (FOB) of $2.0 billion in 2020. 267,901 tonnes of seafood were exported in 2018. 
    • And source of jobs: Employing more than 13,000 full time workers, the seafood industry has 2,500 people working in commercial fishing and aquaculture operations at sea (source)
    • As in Australia, things are expected to improve: The seafood processing industry is anticipated to grow over the next five years as global economic conditions recover from Covid-19. Household disposable incomes and seafood consumption are both expected to rise, boosting industry revenue (source).

    Insight from the seafood processing industry

    The fish and seafood industry is constantly evolving. And if fish processors aren’t changing too, they’ll fall by the wayside. That’s why we spoke to Alex Knoll, Director of Seafood Operations at Barossa Fine Foods, to get insight into how they’re adapting:

    “The Seafood industry has been doing the same thing for a long time: you get a fish turn it into a fillet and sell it. Consumers now want to know where the fish has come from and the best way to cook it.

    So we have developed fresh skin packed trays for retail, and started doing flavoured butter in our trays. We are also looking at increasing the range and giving recipe ideas to help customers have more confidence to cook fish.

    As a food producer we need to think like our customers, so we can give them what they are looking for in food.”

    Alex Knoll
    Seafood Operations Manager/Food Service Manager
    Barossa Fine Foods

    Processing equipment for seafood and fish industry

    FPE supplies best-in-class solutions for fish and seafood secondary processing in Australia and New Zealand.

    PROCESSING ACTIVITY MANUFACTURER USAGE EXAMPLES
    Tempering/thawing AMTek Microwave Thawing frozen fish or seafood for processing or cooking
    Hard & soft separation SEPAmatic Gently removing fish flesh from bone or shell from seafood
    Mincing SEPAmatic Pushing soft flesh through a perforated drum to produce minced product
    Skinning Grasselli Removing membrane on fresh fish
    Slicing  Magurit Slicing or dicing fresh or frozen blocks 
    Trimming Bettcher Industries Long slicing and salmon blood line removal
    Can opening DC Norris Opening cans of fish or other ingredients for processing
    HACCP compliance and X-Ray inspection Eagle PI Contaminant detection in unprocessed and finished product
    Production hygiene Elpress Hand and boot sanitisation for workersPallet and crate washing
    Material handling SYSPAL Sanitising conveyors to sanitise packaged product between processing areasOperator-safe machines for mixing, tipping, washing, weighing and stacking Euro bins of product

    So if you’re a seafood processor in Australia or New Zealand, trust FPE. For equipment, maintenance and more, we’re the leading provider. Contact us today on 1800 882 549 in Australia and 0800 100 003 in New Zealand to discuss your business needs. 

    FAQs

    How big is the seafood industry?

    In Australia, the gross value of fisheries and aquaculture production in 2019-2020 was $3.15 billion (source). The New Zealand seafood industry had a total export earning (FOB) of $2.0 billion in 2020.

    What does the seafood industry do?

    The seafood industry is responsible for all commercial activities of wild-caught, aquaculture marine and freshwater animals—from harvesting, farming and culturing, to processing, transporting and selling fish, seafood and seafood products.