Huon opens new Tasmanian processing facility as Japanese drive demand

Posted by AFN Staff Writers on 15th July 2015

SushiAustralian salmon company Huon Aquaculture has opened a new processing facility in the north of Tasmania. The company says a growing taste for its salmon in Japan and other export markets is helping drive growth.

The ‘Smokehouse and Product Innovation Centre’ is a $12 million investment by Huson Aquaculture.

Chief Executive Officer and Co-founder of Huon Aquaculture, Peter Bender said the opening brought the company’s value added processing operations to Tasmania for the first time.

“This Smokehouse and Product Innovation Centre is part of a four-year, $160 million Controlled Growth Strategy for the company which is delivering increased production capacity and efficiency whilst reducing our environmental footprint,” said Mr Bender.

Around 100 jobs were created during the construction of the facility and it has opened with 70 new employees.

Executive Director and Co-founder, Frances Bender said the new Smokehouse and Product Innovation Centre is one of the most advanced in the world and will help the company to engage in product innovation.

“The reputation and demand for Tasmanian produce is growing continuously, both within Australia and through international markets,” said Mrs Bender.

The new factory is 2,500 square metres, about double the size of the pre-existing centre. It is designed to maximise linear flow and provide complete segregation between hot and cold smoked processing.

A suspended walkway across existing and new processing facilities provides access to staff entry areas, as well as viewing facilities for customers and visitors.

Additional works will include an upgrade to the existing fresh salmon processing facility.

Growing taste for salmon in Japan accelerating Huon Aquaculture growth

A growing taste for salmon in Japan has become a large driving force behind Huon Aquaculture’s export expansion.

Reported by the ABC, Huon already exports 1000 tonnes of salmon to Japan each year through a local distributor, Blue Link, but the amount will grow with the new Tasmania facility.

Although fish and spices have always been part of the Japanese diet, a growing like for the taste and appearance of the Huon fish product has made it popular and the salmon is being increasingly used in sushi in Japan too.

About Huon Aquaculture

Huon Aquaculture was founded in 1986 by Peter and Frances Bender at Hideaway Bay in Tasmania’s far south. ASX listed (HUO) but still majority Australian family owned and operated, the Huon Aquaculture Group produces over 17,000 tonnes of fresh salmon per year.