Each year the Australian seafood industry exports in excess of $350 million worth of perishable (live or chilled) seafoods to Asia alone. It is an industry where value adding often means 'delivery alive or ultra fresh', and as a consequence, it is highly dependent on effective air transport.
In any one year it likely that 40,000 tonnes of perishable seafood will be transported domestically, or depart from Australian airports by air. This is a significant volume by any standard.
The vast majority of this product reaches its destination on time and in the condition intended, however, because of the scale of this trade, problems do exist. These problems affect both the seafood industry and the airlines, although in different ways. A voidable costs are estimated in the tens of millions of dollars annually.
The report by House of Representative's Standing Committee on Micro-economic. Reform, Communication and Transport 'Jet Fresh - Paddock To Plate' considered impediments to effective airfreight of Australia's perishable exports as an issue of national importance. The report recognised the work being undertaken by SeaQual and the PSM Group and included in its recommendations that other industries should follow the example set by the seafood industry in developing through-chain quality (service) agreements between airlines and industry.