- Gould's squid and southern calamari squid (both members of the class Cephalopoda) are fished sustainably around Australia. Squid are also imported from New Zealand, Asia and the USA, although the sustainability of these fisheries cannot be guaranteed.
What’s the Catch?
- Gould’s squid and southern calamari are found in large numbers across Australia’s southern waters. They are voracious feeders that are fast growing and short lived.
- Gould’s squid reproduce in big numbers, so they can withstand high levels of fishing pressure. Harvesting levels are making little impact on squid populations, and catches could potentially be significantly increased.
- Due to the overfishing of larger fish such as tuna, rays and shark, the natural predators of squid, there has been an increase in squid numbers worldwide and they are expanding into new areas.
- The only large-scale local operation that specifically targets the species is the Southern Squid Jig Fishery in southeast Australia. Commercial catch of squid is predominantly taken using jigs. Bycatch is minimal and there is little impact on the surrounding marine environment.
- Squid is a minor fishery in Australia at present, and most of it is caught as bycatch when fishing for other species, like prawns. But as finfish stocks deplete around the world, squid stocks may come under increasing demand as new protein sources are sought. More research would be required to determine sustainable levels of a cephalopod fishery.
- It is estimated that the amount of squid eaten by its predators, especially sperm whales, is greater than the total world catch of all marine species combined (Voss, 1973; Clarke, 1983).
What’s the Solution?
- Squid are abundant and they replenish their stocks quickly. Consider eating Australian caught Gould’s squid from the Commonwealth Southern Squid Jig Fishery, and southern calamari, as they are both sustainable options.
Whats the Recipe?
- The Australian Marine Conservation Society lists Gould’s squid from the Commonwealth Southern Squid Jig Fishery as a better choice
- The Australian Marine Conservation Society lists southern calamari as a better choice
- Southern calamari in Port Phillip Bay, Victoria, is rated as a sustainable fish stock and is accredited sustainable by the Australian Conservation Federation’s Sustainable Australian Seafood Assessment Program
- Broad squid on the Hawkesbury in NSW is accredited sustainable by the Australian Conservation Federation’s Sustainable Australian Seafood Assessment Program
- Gould’s squid in South Australia is rated as not overfished by government fish stocks
- FRDC research on Gould’s Squid
- The Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations - world squid resources
- The Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations’ report ‘Cephalopods Of The World’
- More on Gould’s squid
- More on southern calamari squid
What's the Catch premieres 8.30pm Thursday 30 October on SBS ONE.
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