A trial of changes to rock lobster availability for tourism operators is expected to inject $110 million in additional visitor expenditure into the WA economy.
The changes will allow increased boat limits of rock lobster for selected charter operators, and will mean tour operators can store lobsters on vessels to tend to pots prior to tours, guaranteeing a catch-and-cook experience for visitors.
“Increasing the number of lobsters which can be caught presents an exceptional opportunity to expand marine tourism in WA and support jobs in coastal communities,” Tourism Council WA CEO Evan Hall said.
“Giving selected marine tourism operators the flexibility to store lobsters on their vessels guarantees an exciting catch-and-cook experience for visitors and will enhance WA’s reputation as a marine tourism destination.”
Mr Hall said rock lobsters were a hero product for Western Australia, attracting foodies, fishers and seafood lovers from across the world.
“Premium seafood experiences are particularly valuable in attracting international visitors who love the unique seafood and will spend around $5,000 per trip in Western Australia,” he said.
“The most valuable rock lobster is the one a tourist has spent thousands of dollars travelling in WA to catch themselves or eat fresh while visiting our amazing coast.”