Seafood forum sells its story

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In the 70s cray fishermen used to moor their boats in Yanchep Lagoon but now the popular but sometimes dangerous area is not deep enough for that purpose. Picture: Anita McInnes

SEAFOOD Directions started in 1999 as an initiative of the Fisheries Research and Development Corporation to provide a national forum for the exchange of ideas, identification of national seafood issues and to provide an opportunity for learning from experts, colleagues and associated industries.

The 2015 event at Crown Perth includes presentations from the Fisheries Research Development Corporation, Australian Fisheries Management Forum, National Seafood Industry Alliance and Damien Bell from BellBuoy Seafoods who will present A Fishery In Transition – Engage. Promote. Survive.

Western Australian Fishing Industry Council and Seafood Directions 2015 chairman Arno Verboon said it would bring together a wide range of stakeholders in the Australian fishing and seafood industry as presenters and exhibitors with the theme of Selling Our Story.

“The outcomes and outputs of the conference will assist to develop critical strategies from which actions will drive and guide the industry into the future,’’ he said.

“The industry never faces a shortage of challenges and this event will help unfold some of these and identify ways and opportunities for the future.’’

Western Australian Marine Science Institution research consultant Jenny Shaw will talk about Increasing knowledge in fishing communities with collaboration, credibility and co-production.

An abstract of her presentation shows Ms Shaw will tell her audience that climate change science can be complex, confusing and contentious.

“To maximise opportunities for adaptation, increased knowledge and understanding of climate change is essential,’’ the abstract says.

“In coastal fishing communities around Australia, changes to the coastal and marine environment have been observed and recorded.

“Despite this, anecdotal evidence suggests that there is low acceptance, limited knowledge and little interest in climate change science.

“This paper discusses a number of communication methods that were used in three communities around Australia to build knowledge of climate change.

“The coastal communities of St Helen’s in Tasmania, Bowen in Queensland, and Geraldton in Western Australia are traditionally referred to as ‘fishing towns.’ “These communities and particularly members of the fishing industry were the focus of this study.’’

The study engaged fishers, the local community and visitors from around Australia and overseas. It appeared successful in building knowledge of climate change in coastal communities and telling the powerful story of an iconic Western Australian fishing community.