[Australia] Leading aquaculture water bioremediation expert MBD has bought Ayr-based tiger prawn and cobia farmer Pacific Reef
Fisheries as well as land and permits to construct a new 259ha state-of-the-art prawn and seaweed production facility at Guthalungra near Bowen.
The purchase will see Pacific Reef Fisheries continue to produce and market premium quality tiger prawns and the award-winning restaurant table fish, cobia, from its existing 98ha Ayr site in addition to significant new tiger prawn capacity from the Guthalungra facility, when constructed.
Announcing the acquisition, MBD managing director Andrew Lawson said the Pacific Reef Fisheries Guthalungra project was great news for environmentally sustainable aquaculture and marked the start of an exciting new growth phase for Australian prawn production.
“Growing global demand for farmed seafood and our ability to empower producers with low-cost and environmentally compliant water bioremediation makes MBD a natural fit with the rapidly expanding aquaculture industry,” Mr Lawson said.
“We’re delighted to demonstrate our commitment to this exciting Australian growth industry by making this investment.”
The approval for the expansion, which will more than triple Pacific Reef Fisheries’ tiger prawn production, has been made possible by MBD’s innovative and award-winning system which is able to recycle or return water to the sea without impacting the environment.
The PRF approvals are the only new permits granted in the last 15 years and follow years of dedicated work at Ayr and in Townsville.
MBD’s HRAP Water Bio-remediation was developed at PRF’s Ayr site and MBD’s algae research and development facility at James Cook University’s Townsville campus and will be used in the new Guthalungra facility to farm seaweed alongside prawns.
Mr Lawson said MBD was recycling nutrient-rich aquaculture water to nourish the rapid growth of seaweed which not only cleaned the water but provided a significant product in its own right.
Added to projects with other seafood farmers in Queensland, MBD is also working closely with major aquaculture producers on large-scale water bioremediation projects in Vietnam and is at Stage 1 commissioning of its new $13 million astaxanthin production facility at Ayr.
Mr Lawson said MBD’s commercial focus on sustainable aquaculture and water bioremediation would have long-term benefits to customers and investors alike.
“We know the world’s population is growing rapidly and consequently that demand for nutritious aquaculture products and clean water will grow just as fast,” Mr Lawson said.
“There’s no question this is a tremendously exciting industry for us to be in.”
Photo: A view over Pacific Reef Fisheries farming operations near Ayr which has been acquired by MBD.
View original article at: Aquaculture research group buys Pacific Prawn Fisheries at Ayr