A major reason for the code is to ensure that quality of product is maintained throughout the industry, particularly with new entrants. With the appointment of a full-time extension officers to the freshwater crayfish industry and an increased profile of the support agencies at field days and agricultural shows, there is an expected increase in people taking up yabby farming. The Western Australian yabby industry has a number of processors that receive product from growers and various depots that act as staging facilities for receiving product. The supply network varies from State to State however the processor network in Western Australia does provide an excellent model for industries in other States when developing a coordinated supply and marketing chain.
The code outlines the do’s and don’ts of growing yabbies. It does not discuss the higher technological aspects of processing.
The Code identifies best practice farming methods and quality processes for product(including safety).
All sectors of the freshwater crayfish industry will benefit from the Code. Developing sectors of the industry, such as new producers, will be able to adopt quality standards that result in high returns without having to suffer mortalities and loss of quality through poor handling or packaging. The Code provides a mechanism for informing and teaching producers of advances in handling their product.
The yabby industry in Western Australia became established in the mid-1980s.
Western Australia is currently the major producer of farmed yabbies in Australia, exporting more than seventy percent of production. The growth in yabby farming has been one of the main reasons for developing this Code of Practice.
The Yabby Producers Association of Western Australia (YPAWA) in its Development Plan of 1994 identified the need for a Code of Practice to address a number of issues that would enable the successful development of a sustainable industry.
A major reason for the Code is to ensure that quality of product is maintained throughout the industry, particularly with new entrants. With the appointment of a full-time extension officer to the industry and an increased profile of the Fisheries extension branch at field days and agricultural shows, the number of people taking up yabby farming in farm dams is expected to increase. These people are being encouraged to use the existing processors to sell their product and not try to take on the role of marketing. The Code outlines the dos and don'ts of growing yabbies. It does not discuss the more technical aspects of processing. The Code is not just about quality, but also addresses some of the fundamental factors that affect production and how these relate to quality.
The Code provides a step-by-step approach to successful yabby farming by adopting the best practices.
A video based on the written procedures is an integral part of the Code. It can be found here.