March 06, 2020
NIWA to trial kingfish farm
The Provincial Growth Fund is investing $6 million in a land-based aquaculture pilot to see whether yellowtail kingfish can be commercially farmed in Northland.
Regional Economic Development Minister Shane Jones says the system will be built and operated at the National Institute of Water and Atmospheric Research's Northland Marine Research Centre at Bream Bay.
Niwa will contribute $7.84m and Northland Regional Council up to $6m in buildings and infrastructure.
Mr Jones says the recirculating system is a prototype to see if it is technically and economically feasible to grow 600 tonnes of yellowtail kingfish to market size each year.
If successful, he expects the private sector will draw on the knowledge to invest in larger reticulating aquaculture operations, not only in Northland but nationwide.
He says world demand for sustainable products like kingfish is increasing, particularly for the high-end sushi market.
Local restaurant suppliers have also shown a demand for kingfish if its supply and quality is consistent.
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