Huon Aquaculture to invest $110 million to boost land-based production at Port Huon, Tasmania

Press Release Jun 27, 2024
Huon Whale Point Nursery Expansion 1
  • Huon will expand its land-based salmon farming facilities with a new Recirculating Aquaculture System (RAS) at its Whale Point site, in southern Tasmania.
  • Huon has pioneered land-based aquaculture and off-shore farming in Tasmania.
  • Increasingly raised in world-leading RAS, Huon salmon can spend longer on land than they do in the ocean.
  • The proposed expansion supports the Tasmanian Government’s Salmon Industry Plan.
  • The investment will generate about 150 construction jobs and support new jobs in the Port Huon community.

Huon is preparing to invest $110 million to expand its existing freshwater Atlantic salmon nursery, building a new Recirculating Aquaculture System (RAS) at its Whale Point site in Port Huon.

The Whale Point expansion will allow Huon to continue growing fish longer on land, which means fish that go to sea will be larger and spend less time in the marine environment.

This project highlights Huon’s continuous innovation; pioneering technology and practices which cement the company as a global leader in aquaculture.

The project is a significant investment in regional Tasmania, generating about 150 jobs during construction and 8 permanent jobs at Huon once the facility is operational. Huon plans to start building the new facility in early 2025, pending approvals, and aims to be fully operational by 2027.

Huon led the use of RAS facilities in Tasmania with the opening of its first nursery at Whale Point in 2019.

Huon Aquaculture CEO Henry Batista said the $110 million investment will enable Huon to deploy cutting-edge technology to grow bigger fish on land.

“Huon salmon can already spend most of their lifecycle on land and this expansion strengthens our land-based farming capabilities,” Mr. Batista said.

“This investment will also further improve water use at Whale Point, increasing the amount of water recycled in the RAS to 99%. The remaining one per cent of water is used in our aquaculture operations and filtered waste from the facility is used by local farmers to grow produce like cherries.

“This investment allows us to utilise our existing land and offshore marine farming sites to meet growing demand for our premium Tasmanian salmon, while providing a significant boost for the construction industry and local businesses,” Mr. Batista said.

“We have about 140 employees across our nursery, net maintenance and marine operations based in Port Huon and this $110 million expansion will create another 8 full-time jobs, cementing Huon as one of the biggest employers in the region,” Mr. Batista said.

Huon proudly employs about 1000 people across its Australian operations.

BC Electrical is among the local businesses set to work on the project and Automation Engineer Ryan Flint said the new RAS facility would generate ongoing work for his company.

“During the construction phase of this project, we’re predicting that we will need to employ an additional 5-10 staff members. Beyond the construction phase, the new facility will create additional ongoing work for our business particularly in maintenance work, once the new nursery is operational,“ Mr Flint said.

“Like many Huon Valley businesses, we see this $110 million dollar investment in the region as a massive boost to the local economy. This industry employs thousands of people in regional parts of Tasmania from both the aquaculture sites themselves, and local businesses such as transport and takeaways. It also keeps many families based in these regional locations, boosting schools and communities.”

Minister for Business, Industry and Resources, Eric Abetz said the Tasmanian Liberal Government welcomed Huon’s investment announcement.

“As part of our 2030 Strong Plan for Tasmania’s Future we are backing in industry to grow jobs and invest in projects around Tasmania,” he said.

“The expected benefits to the region from the construction and operational phases of this proposed world leading hatchery would be far-reaching, boosting regional employment, bolstering business confidence and giving the community certainty into the future.”

Huon is offering free tours and information sessions for the local community to learn more about the proposed expansion. Timeslots need to be pre-booked at: sessions


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About Huon Aquaculture

Huon Aquaculture has proudly operated in Tasmania for over 35 years and currently employs 1000 people, including more than 850 Tasmanians. The $1.3 billion salmon industry is nationally significant, contributing to our nation’s food security and supporting over 5,000 jobs.

Huon’s journey began in the picturesque waters of Hideaway Bay, starting as a local fish farming business in the Huon Valley, Tasmania. With a strong sense of community, passion, and care for quality, Huon grew from one pen of fish in 1986, into one of Australia’s leading aquaculture businesses. After proudly growing the company for more than 35 years, Huon became part of the JBS Australia Group in 2021.