Over 300 industry leaders have gathered in Nelson for the 2012 New Zealand Aquaculture Conference.
Now in its fifth year our annual conference has become an important forum for providing inspiration, examples and experiences to help businesses grow and aligning our sector towards a common goal.
This year we focus on Sustainable Growth.
We have a proud track record of responsible, world-leading environmental management practices stretching back over 40 years.
In 2011 we employed over 3000 Kiwis and generated over $400 million in sales through the sustainable production of premium seafood.
Moving forward, the strengthening global demand for quality seafood offers New Zealand a unique opportunity to utilise abundant, sheltered, pristine coastal waters to generate much-needed export earnings.
Our outstanding cast of presenters will explore this opportunity with the understanding that core to our future is an uncompromising commitment to sustainable practices.
Firstly, we welcome the Minster for Primary Industries, the Hon David Carter. Following the 2011 aquaculture law reforms and general election, we continue to have a strong working relationship with government and it is an honour to host the lead Minister for aquaculture as he outlines the Government’s vision for the New Zealand aquaculture industry.
While the reforms provided an overarching and enabling framework, the implementation and planning still remains the responsibility of regional authorities.
To discuss and outline the future of aquaculture in their own back yards we welcome Tasman Mayor Richard Kempthorne, Marlborough Mayor Alistair Sowman,
Opotiki Mayor John Forbes and Thames-Coromandel CEO David Hammond. We are also fortunate to have Russel McVeagh Partner James Gardner-Hopkins and
Landcare Research Principal Scientist Bob Frame to examine issues surrounding the use of public water space and social licence.
As well as policy and planning and sound environmental management, truly sustainable growth requires value enhancement, product and farming innovations, market development, Maori business, investment and a good understanding the global economy.
Our approach involves learning from the challenges and successes of our fellow primary industries and we are proud to welcome New Zealand Merino CEO John
Brakenridge and ZESPRI CEO Lain Jager.
It also involves learning from our international partners and we are fortunate to have secured an exceptional cast of overseas presenters. A highlight of the conference will be Scottish salmon producer, Loch Duart’s Nick Joy who will share his insights on sustainably producing a premium product among the commoditised Atlantic salmon farming industry.
Continuing our exploration of lessons learned from overseas, we are joined by Australia’s Fisheries Research and Development Corporation Executive Director Patrick Hone and Hong Kong based China market entry specialist Alex Chu, the Everbright Asia Pacific Investment Managing Director. Alex is part of a strong market and brand development focus that also includes Saatchi and Saatchi New Zealand CEO Nicky Bell, Export NZ Executive Director Catherine Beard and Craggy Range’s director of wine Steve Smith.
We welcome all iwi representatives and look forward to hearing Wakatu Incorporated Chair Paul Morgan discuss the intricacies of Maori business and their participation in the New Zealand aquaculture sector.
We also welcome one of the country’s finest chefs, and passionate sustainable seafood advocate Martin Bosley to help us appreciate why our products are the world’s best seafood.
Research and innovation are the cornerstones of progress and make anything possible. In the case of our oyster farms, they’ve had to reconsider their whole approach just to keep the industry going and we welcome Clevedon Coast Oyster’s Callum McCallum to give an update on their progress. As a modern progressive industry, with a scientific approach to growth, we also welcome Cawthron CEO Charles Eason, NIWA’s Andrew Forsythe and Plant and Food’s Sue Marshall.
We also welcome our new platinum sponsor, the Bank of New Zealand, whose support enables us to host a world-class event. They have a 150-year history of helping New Zealand primary industries and have representatives here to discuss how they can work
with you. Their Head of Research Markets Stephen Toplis is also here to provide insight into the global economy and the likely impacts on the sector.
Last but not least, we welcome all marine farmers, processors and representatives of companies who are shareholders in Aquaculture New Zealand. Thank you for your efforts,
your support and your commitment to our industry – this industry is built upon your hard work. This is your conference.