About Marine Farming

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Marine farming has expanded rapidly in Tasmania since the 1990s and is now one of the State's major industries. 

Species farmed in Tasmania include salmonids, oysters, mussels, abalone, seahorses and seaweeds.

Secondary industries such as fabrication, tourism, service providers, and feed producers have also grown around marine farming, creating additional economic and employment benefits to the State.

The gross value for aquaculture production in Tasmania for 2020-21​ was 950​ million dollars. 

The table be​​​low shows the level of production for each marine farming sector.

​​​

​Unit
​​2020-21 Actual1
​Salmonid
​Tonnes
83 056
​Mussels
​Tonnes
481
​Abalone
​Tonnes
310
​Pacific Oysters
'000 ​Dozen
3 200

Source: DPIPWE Annual Report 2021​​

1. The 2020-21 Actual figures are estimates only, as end-​of-financial-ye​ar figures are yet to be finalised.​


​Regulation

State Waters

Using the planning provisions of the Marine Farming Planning Act 1995, Marine Farming Development Plans may be prepared. A Marine Farming Development Plan (MFDP) establishes zones where marine farming leases may be granted.

A MFDP also specifies the maximum leasable area for each zone, the species of fish (finfish, shellfish, seaweed or other species) that may be farmed in the zone and operational constraints on marine farming activities in the form of Management Controls.

The Marine Farming Planning Act 1995 empowers the Minister to grant leases within marine farming zones. Leases are subject to conditions determined by the Minister.

A marine farming lessee (operator) must also be licensed under the Living Marine Resources Management Act 1995.​ A marine farming licence includes conditions relating to operational matters. All marine farming licenses can be viewed on ListMap.

In the case of finfish farming, a holder of a marine farming licence also requires a separate environmental licence in order to conduct marine farming. Environmental licences are administered by the Environment Protection Authority (EPA) and are available to be viewed on ListMap​.

Inland Waters

Aquaculture conducted in inland waters is managed by the Inland Fisheries Services (IFS) under the Inland Fisheries Act 1995. This includes the operation and biosecurity of freshwater hatcheries www.ifs.tas.gov.au

Permits

There are a variety of marine-related activities, including the development of marine farming that may be authorised under the provisions of the Living Marine Resources Management Act 1995 (LMRMA).  More information on permits can be found here​. ​


​Getting in Touch

The Aquaculture Branch, within the Primary Industries and Water Division of the Department of Natural Resources and Environment Tasmania, is responsible for working with aquaculture industries, the community, other agencies, and research organisations to support sustainable development and operation of marine farms within Tasmania.  The Branch supports the aquaculture industry through services including:

  • Planning and management
  • Leasing and licensing
  • Extension and compliance monitoring
  • Environmental management of non-finfish species

The Aquaculture Branch administers the Marine Farming Planning Act 1995 and relevant parts of the  Living Marine Resources Management Act 1995, operating within the provisions of these acts to support and regulate the sustainable development of the aquaculture sector in Tasmania under the objectives of the Resource Management and Planning System of Tasmania.

Contact

Aquaculture Branch
Primary Industries & Water Division
Lands Building
Level 3, 134 Macquarie Street
Hobart TAS 7000
Phone: 1300 368 550
Email: mfops@nre.tas.gov.au