Update - Export restrictions for rock lobster from Tasmania

​Date of effect: 21/01/2013

DAFF issues this direction in writing under the Export Control (Fish and Fish Products) Orders 2005, Order 75, directing exporters and export registered establishments to comply with the following requirements for rock lobster for export from Tasmania until further notice.

DAFF has been advised by the Department of Primary Industries, Parks, Water & Environment (DPIPWE) that part of the Tasmanian East Coast Lobster Fishery has been re–opened to commercial lobster fishing; some parts remain closed.

Exports of rock lobster and rock lobster products harvested from closed areas of the Tasmanian East Coast Lobster Fishery are not permitted.

The direction applies to the species Janus edwardsii (Southern rock lobster).

The key change is that commercial rock lobster fisheries from St Helens Point north to Waterhouse Island reopened at 07:00am on Saturday, 19 January 2013.

The open area is defined as the area of state waters adjacent to the north east coast of Tasmania bounded in the south on the east coast by the line of latitude 41°16’17” South, bounded in the west on the north coast by the line of longitude 147°39’0” East, bounded in the north by the line of latitude 40°39’18” South and bounded in the east by the limit of state waters.

The areas remaining closed to commercial rock lobster fishing are:

  • Waters off the east coast from St Helens from the northern opening of Georges Bay (all waters south of 41°16’17”) to the southern end of Marion Bay at 40°49’.
  • Waters surrounding the Furneaux Islands defined as the area of State waters adjacent to Flinders Island and the Furneaux Group of islands, bounded in the south by the line of latitude at 40°39’18” South, bounded in the west by the line of longitude at 147°39’0” East, bounded in the north by the outer limits of state waters and bounded in the east by the outer limits of state waters.

Contact DPIPWE for more information about the closures, or see Emergency Fishery Closures.

The Tasmanian Department of Health and Human Services (DHHS) issued a public health notice advising the public not to consume rock lobster sourced from closed parts of this fishery.

The presence of the toxin is a result of a naturally occurring algae bloom. Affected rock lobsters do not look or taste any different and the toxin is not destroyed by freezing or cooking.

This direction restricting export is to remain in force until the affected area of the fishery has been re–opened to commercial fishing of rock lobster. DAFF will liaise with the Tasmanian authorities and update and re–issue this notice as required.

Note: to support the export of rock lobster and rock lobster products sourced elsewhere and thus NOT subject to this order, exporters are required to include the following statement on all Declarations of Compliance for rock lobster of these species:

“This rock lobster / rocklobster product has been prepared from rock lobster that has been sourced from an open fisheries area”

Note: for queries regarding rock lobster export, please contact DAFF.

Last reviewed: 4 November 2019
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