Having recently reported record monthly sales, aquaculture company Ocean Grown Abalone (ASX: OGA) is set to further enhance the marketability of their seafood having applied for special sustainability certification for their Flinders Bay farm.
The certification application will be conducted by the Marine Stewardship Council (MSC), an independent body that works to ensure the sustainability of wild global fish stocks and the health of marine ecosystems. With the certification, abalone farmed from the fishery can be marketed with a ‘Certified Sustainable Seafood” sticker.
“Sustainability is a core function of OGA’s business mandate. We are licenced to operate within the Ngari Capes Marine Park in Southwestern Australia,” said Ocean Grown Abalone Executive Director, Brad Adams.
“Independent, third party certification of our wild and sustainability credentials is an important process to validate our sustainability ethos.”
Set to commence in the July quarter, the certification assessment is being funded by the West Australian State Government in partnership with the WA Fishing Industry Council (WAFIC).
“OGA have developed a unique and sustainable abalone business model right here in WA. They are industry leaders in their field and this step towards MSC certification, supported by WA Government funding is seen as further validation of Western Australia’s commitment to protecting our pristine marine environment,” said Heather Brayford, Deputy Director General, Sustainability and Biosecurity Department of Primary Industries and Regional Development.
The certification application comes following record sales reported by Ocean Grown Abalone in March when reporting $553k in sales for the month, their highest on record. It came following a strategic review of its marketing initiatives where lockdowns through the pandemic impacted the aquaculture industry significantly due to lack of demand from locked down restaurants.
In response, the Company explored new export market opportunities which included Taiwan and the United Kingdom, while continuing to service Hong Kong, Sydney and Melbourne.
With the world continuing to recover from the pandemic and damage to the hospitality industry, Ocean Grown Abalone has further growth initiatives lined up having secured a 2-year Option to purchase a 107 hectare block of land in Esperance, WA.
The block is currently subject to a Bankable Feasibility Study to assess the viability of expanding it to an onshore abalone hatchery and grow out facility.