The Border Watch : November 29th 2013
NEWS TIPS firstname.lastname@example.org NEWS 17 NEW MARKET: Pete’s Fish Farm owner Peter Docking will supply native yabbies to the commercial market after his trout farm closed due to rising costs and other challenges. At the peak of his business, he supplied two tonnes of trout to Sydney for the 2000 Olympics. Pictures: SAM DOWDY Yabbies set for commercial sale Semi-retired fi sh farm operator sinks claws into new business venture AFTER 23 years of operation, Kalangadoo’s trout farm has closed, but will continue to supply native yabbies to the commercial market. Pete’s Fish Farm supplied gutted and gilled fresh rainbow trout, smoked trout and caviar for the commercial market and sold some live fi sh for populating dams and waterways. Founder Peter Docking established the trout farm in 1990 with an initial supply of fi sh that he then bred. He supplied an annual average of about 15 tonne of trout to the commercial market - primarily in Adelaide and Sydney. During the life of his business, he has battled rising electricity prices, power outages which killed his fi sh and other obstacles, however there have been some welcome highlights to his career also. “I supplied two tonne of trout to Sydney for the 2000 Olympics, which was a pretty big,” Mr Docking said. About two years ago, Mr Docking lost about 30,000 fi sh. valued at approximately $70,000, and $50,000 worth of caviar when SA Power Networks undertook power line maintenance works. “We were usually notifi ed of any works which could cause us to have no power, but this time I wasn’t informed,” he said. “I was away at the time of the power outage and the pumps on one set of ponds went out and never restarted. “Usually, if I know the power is going to be shut off, I can ensure the pumps continue to operate.” While this incident was a contributing factor to Mr Docking’s decision to close the trout farm, he said there were plenty of other reasons. “We just weren’t profi table anymore and I sold by last tonne at a loss,” he said. “When I started, the power bill equated to 70c per kilogram of fi sh and when I sold my last lot of fi sh it was about $4 per kilogram. “The carbon tax and increasing licence fees also contributed to the costs becoming too high to operate at a profi t.” Mr Docking said producing native yabbies for Melbourne’s commercial market was more cost effective than producing trout. “We only need to operate the pumps for 24 hours a week with the yabbies as opposed to 24 hours a day, seven days a week with the trout,” he said. “I’ve also been conducting some trials with other species of fi sh, such as silver perch.” Although he is disappointed about how his business came to an end, Mr Docking has embraced semi-retirement and is enjoying his newfound freedom. “I had been thinking about retiring for some time so it was a good time for me to get out,” he said “It is disappointing how it ended though because I wanted it to be a business I could be proud of. “It would have been nice to retire in a profi table way rather than being forced out. “I’m still getting acclimatised to not worrying when we have a power failure, but I look forward to travelling and seeing some different fi sh in remote areas.” Simply answer this question: Why is drinking tap water better for your health and the environment? Send your answer in 150 words or less – or draw us a picture! Be as creative as you like. e! For full details and to download an entry form visit: sawater.com.au/education Government of South Australia The Border Watch, Friday, November 29, 2013 - 17 WIN $1000 and an AquaBUBBLER drink refill station for your club!
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