Discussion paper

Making mountains out of minnows: salmon in the Tasmanian economy

Aquaculture Fisheries Economic indicators Tasmania
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Making mountains out of minnows (report) 449.7 KB

The Tasmanian government describes the state’s salmon industry as “critically important” and “important to the economic future of the state.” If industry plans to almost double in size are met, it will be “one of the largest industries in the Tasmanian economy.”

Then Opposition Leader Bill Shorten said in 2017 that the industry accounted for “literally thousands of local jobs” and was “an important part of the Tasmanian economy.” Shorten’s union, the Australian Workers Union, describes salmon as Tasmania’s “brightest economic prospect” and a “critical growth industry.” Even Tasmanian chef and SBS personality Matthew Evans, who has since been critical of the salmon industry, said that in Tasmania “everyone knows someone who works in the salmon industry."

Everyone seems to know that salmon is big business and critical to Tasmania. Some believe this perception has resulted in the environmental impacts of the industry being brushed aside. This report puts Tasmania’s salmon industry into its wider economic context.

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