Award proves why picking local is always best
THE Bowen region is known for some of the best fish in the world and a recent second place in a prestigious award has cemented its position.
North Queensland's Coral Coast Barramundi has been recognised at the 2019 Sydney Royal Fine Food Show and Royal Taste of Excellence Awards, winning Silver in the Whole Barramundi - Large Size category.
The Guthalungra based barramundi farm produces 850 tonnes of barramundi annually, supplying it to fine dining restaurants in capital cities across the country.
Farm Manager, Justin Forrester, said the award acknowledged the dedication and expertise of the entire Coral Coast Barramundi team and their commitment to nurturing a premium, sustainable, locally sourced produce.
Although often dubbed one of Queensland's most iconic estuary fish, recent statistics showed that 60 per cent of Australian diners were consuming imported barramundi, mostly unaware of where their fish had come from.
"Despite it being Australia's national fish, only a third of the barramundi we eat comes from Australian waters," Mr Forrester said.
"The national recognition provided by the Sydney Royal Fine Food Show affirms Australian barramundi as a world-class product of which we can all be very proud."
The Barramundi farm has been operating for about 15 years and is the biggest of its kind in Queensland.
The farm is a fully integrated facility with its own breeding centre, hatchery, nursery, grow-out ponds and processing facility.
The barramundi is housed in large tanks of saltwater where they are looked after by marine biologists 24 hours a day, 365 days a year.
"At Coral Coast Barramundi, our fish are reared from local stock that is found naturally in the coastal waters that surround our farm," Mr Forrester said.
"Through the precise management of the entire farming process - from egg to dispatch - we can ensure our fish are every bit as healthy, vibrant and tasty as their wild cousins on the Great Barrier Reef."
The farm has been spearheading a focus into educating consumers about asking the simple question of where their seafood comes from when they dine out.
"It is really important for people to ask 'where is this fish from', is it Australian farmed, is it Australian wild-caught, to try and work out what they are paying for," Mr Forrester previously said.
The latest accolade adds to the farms suite of Gold, Silver and Bronze awards won at previous Sydney Royal Fine Food Show events.