Fishers chip in on plastic war

THE seafood industry can get a bad rap when it comes to marine debris but Seafood Industry Australia is using Plastic Free July as an opportunity to highlight the ways seafood businesses are fighting the war on plastic by finding replacements and implementing change.

Plastic Free July is a global movement helping to reduce plastic pollution for cleaner streets, oceans, and communities.

But for local fisheries, reducing marine debris is something they do year-round.

Port Lincoln aquaculture businesses developed and have been participating in the 'Adopt-a-Beach' program since 2011.

The program includes a quarterly beach clean up and reporting on the quantity and sort of litter collected during the clean ups.

In addition to that work, the Australian Southern Bluefin Tuna Industry Association has also made changes in recent years from feeding tuna frozen, palletised sardines to fresh sardines.

Implementing this change has reduced the amount of plastic wrap used locally.

Seafood Industry Australia chief executive officer Jane Lovell said around the country, different fisheries were making changes to eradicate plastic, some were recycling 100 per cent of all hard and soft plastics while others were looking out for "ghost gear".

"We advocate the health, sustainability and future of our ocean. It's our livelihood and the future livelihood of generations to come," Ms Lovell said.

"Plastic Free July is an important reminder that we all have a role to play in eliminating plastic from our marine environment."