New Zealand’s major aquaculture areas are Northland, Coromandel, Tasman and Golden Bays, Marlborough, Banks Peninsula and Stewart Island. CLICK HERE to a map outlining the major Aquaculture areas.
Marine Farming Association owns 5 spat catching and 8 spat holding farms in the Marlborough Sounds.
These are located in Beatrix Bay, Clova Bay (2), Wet Inlet, Danger Point, Fitzroy Bay, Te Puraka Bay, Te Puru, Waihinau Bay, Whakitenga, Whangatoetoe Bay, Garnes Bay, plus seasonal spat catching sites in Golden Bay and Tasman Bay.
The Marine Farming Association (MFA) and its members are committed to the environment and since the 1990s the MFA has operated an active Environmental Programme.
In the early days this was focused on cleaning up and recording industry and recreational debris collected on the beaches in the Marlborough Sounds.
This programme was later extended to include Golden Bay and Tasman Bay and the scope was widened to include all ‘on water’ marine farming activities, including minimising the impact on the environment from:
Debris from marine farming activities
Noise levels from marine farming activities
Pollution and emissions from industry vessels
Waste taken to landfill
The Environmental Programme is guided by the ‘Top of the South Environmental Strategy’ and managed by the MFA’s Environment Committee. The Guiding Principles are:
To minimise the impact of marine farming activities on the wider environment and community in which we operate
To minimise generic concerns which from time to time may be expressed by other stakeholders and users of the Marlborough Sounds, Golden Bay and Tasman Bay in respect of marine farming
The programme includes a large number of volunteers from the marine farming industry. Also the MFA employs environmental mentors in Marlborough and Tasman Bay/Golden Bay. These mentors work with farmers to ensure they are complying within the industry standards.
The ‘army’ of volunteers are made up of MFA members and marine farming companies that donate their time, vessels and equipment to monitor on a roster basis ‘collector’ areas in the Top of the South, they also participate in regular beach clean ups.
The MFA also employs an Environment Programme Manager who oversees the implementation of the Top of the South Environmental Strategy and works with industry operators and other stakeholders to ensure the objectives of the Strategy are met. This work includes reporting on the activities of the participants and monitoring and cleaning up key areas of the Top of the South.
Because we know how much Kiwis love the outdoors and how important the environment is, the beach cleans extend further than marine farm debris and we collect all debris including recreational debris.
The MFA also operates an Environmental Hotline for use by members of the Association and the general public. If you have any matters of concern in respect to the marine farming industry’s environmental performance in the Top of the South Island please call this number.