A long-term plan for the future management of New Zealand’s most valuable snapper fishery has been accepted by Primary Industries Minister Nathan Guy today.

“The Snapper 1 Management Plan is the result of more than two years hard work by the SNA1 Strategy Group, which is made up of members from the customary, recreational and commercial fishing sectors,” says Mr Guy.

“This fishery includes Bay of Plenty, the Hauraki Gulf and the eastern coast of Northland and is one of our most iconic inshore fisheries. It’s pleasing to have a range of perspectives sitting around the table and coming up with a long term plan for maximising the benefits for everyone.”

A draft plan was released in September this year and went out for public discussion, including public meetings and hui.

The final report has a strong focus on improving fishing practices, minimising waste and gathering accurate information. The recommendations include:

Aiming to achieve a biomass target of 40 per cent of the unfished state by 2040, with an aim of 30 per cent by 2025 A review conducted by 2021 with updated stock information Educate all fishers on ways to avoid juvenile fish and increase survival rates of snapper released Close monitoring including analysis of catch levels by all sectors.

“I want to thank the members of this group for working constructively on this plan. It is the first time a joint approach like this has been taken by the users of this important fishery.”

The group was chaired by Sir Ian Barker QC with three members each from the commercial, recreational and customary sectors. Officials from MPI and NIWA scientists also supported the group.

“Establishing this SNA1 Strategy Group was an important part of the changes I announced in 2013 to continue the rebuild of the Snapper 1 stock for future generations.

“The aim is for this report to be a living document so that people can continue to input and give feedback. An advisory group with representatives from all sectors will continue the group’s work.”

A full copy of the report is available at http://www.mpi.govt.nz/document-vault/13801

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