Western Rock Lobster Market Report | June 2021
Please read on for updated information regarding catches in the western rock lobster fishery, processing of western rock lobster, rock lobster exports from Australia and New Zealand, and lobster imports for Hong Kong and Taiwan. This month’s markets content also includes some commentary on WWF guidance for Hong Kong consumers and an update on COVID-19 in Taiwan.
Catch data for the western rock lobster fishery
The ‘Catch Balance Graph By Zone (Warehouse)’ report is prepared twice-monthly by DPIRD, most recently on 16 July. It provides information on entitlement landed within the West Coast Rock Lobster Managed Fishery (WCRLMF), on a monthly and zonal basis. If you have any queries in relation to the report, please e-mail QMSAdmin@fish.wa.gov.au or contact the Rock Lobster Help Line 1300 574 071.
Processing of western rock lobster
Rock lobster exports from Western Australia and the rest of Australia
Rock lobster exports from New Zealand
Lobster imports for Hong Kong
WWF-Hong Kong asks consumers to avoid Boston lobster (Homarus americanus)—instead recommends Western Australian lobster
WWF-Hong Kong launched an updated version of their well-known Seafood Guide on the annual ‘Shark Awareness Day’ (14 July). The Boston lobster, a popular species with Hong Kong diners, and previously recommended, has been updated to ‘Red – Avoid’ joining other red-category species such as sharks, bluefin tuna and eels. Michelle Wong, Conservation Officer, Oceans at WWF-Hong Kong, explained the reason, “Although the Boston lobster is not threatened with extinction, its harvesting ground overlaps with the habitat of the North Atlantic right whale. The North Atlantic right whale was moved from Endangered to Critically Endangered on the IUCN Red List of Threatened Species last year, with bycatch and entanglement in lobster fishing gear as key threats to the whale species. So consumers are advised to choose ‘Green – Recommended’ species – such as rock lobster from Western Australia.” Click through for full article.
Lobster imports for Taiwan
Note: The stringency index (0–100) records the strictness of ‘lockdown style’ policies that primarily restrict people’s behaviour (e.g. school and workplace closures, restrictions on gatherings, and restrictions on movements).
Source: Oxford COVID-19 Government Response Tracker (OxCGRT)
Taiwan ramped up restrictions in response to a mid-May wave of COVID-19 cases. The impact of the restrictions is likely reflected in the reduction in lobster import volumes through June—not surprising given that restaurants (where most lobster are consumed) were some of the most heavily restricted businesses. The intervention appears to have been successful, as daily case numbers have reduced drastically. Restrictions began to be eased during July.