Tomaree research facility to be refurbished under collaborative agreement

The NSW Department of Primary Industries (DPI) has entered into a collaborative agreement with Southern Cross Shellfish to improve supply of selectively bred oyster juveniles to the NSW oyster industry, NSW Primary Industries Minister, Ian Macdonald, said today.

"The adoption of oyster research by industry has been advanced by a joint decision by NSW Department of Primary Industries (DPI) and Southern Cross Shellfish (SCS) to refurbish the Tomaree Mollusc Research Facility, at a cost of about $30,000," Mr Macdonald said.

"For over two decades, NSW Fisheries has undertaken research on oysters and other species including abalone, sea urchins and scallops within the grounds of the NSW Department of Aging, Disability and Home Care (DADHC) Tomaree Facility.

"Southern Cross Shellfish will fund the refurbishment, which will see the aging greenhouse structures and shipping containers removed and replaced with a secure colour bond shed within the bounds of the existing facilities at the site.

"The Tomaree Facility is ideally placed for small-scale oyster research because of its proximity to ocean seawater and the memorandum of understanding between the NSW DPI and NSW DADHC covering research on the site."

Dr Wayne O’Connor, NSW DPI Senior Research Scientist in charge of mollusc aquaculture research, said the agreement with SCS will help to develop oyster hatchery technology in NSW.

"This agreement demonstrates an ongoing whole of government commitment to the NSW oyster industry, with much of the proposed oyster research to be conducted at the Tomaree Facility," Dr O’Connor said.

Director of Southern Cross Shellfish Mr Greg Kent said the 4 year collaborative agreement will see SCS responsible for the maintenance and upgrading of the facility.

"NSW DPI and SCS will work closely with DADHC officers to limit any inconvenience to Tomaree Lodge residents or to the public," Mr Kent said.

"Work is expected to commence in early June and take approximately four weeks to complete."