Finfish Trawling

Seine netting, Finfish trawling, Surface netting

The Agricultural, Forestry and Fisheries sector is made up of organisations in farming, growing, fishing, forestry, hunting and trapping and agricultural services.

The sector includes 174,700 organisations, which employ 319,000 people mainly “mum and dad” farmers, who make up 93% of the sector.

Employment in the Agriculture, Forestry and Fishing sector has declined over the past fifteen years, but it continues to provide jobs for more than 300,000 workers, 82% of which are in regional Australia.

The sector is continually challenged by the volatility of market prices and weather. There are few direct technology threats to farmers and producers in the Agriculture sector and technology even provides tools to help manage commodity price and weather fluctuations.

Facts & Figures

Employment: 319,000

Category Opportunity & Threat

174,700 Employing 46% Self-employed 54%
Avg Salary $57,564 Avg weekly $1107


With a shortage of skilled and semi-skilled labour, the interest in new farming and fishing methods has grown.

Blockchain technology means that soon a simple scan of tuna packaging using a smartphone app will reveal where and when the fish was caught, by which vessel and fishing method.

The SmartOysters platform enables aquaculture farm collaboration and data sharing, connecting farmers to each other and wholesalers, restaurants and consumers. Each farmer can manage and own their data, whilst sharing data and workflows for research, benchmarking and collaborative farm practices.


A major threat to farmers is the “control of destiny” – re data, not just on individual farms but locally and across regions and states. Data can be captured by a variety of sensors on machinery and cameras including infrared, thermal, multi-spectral and natural gamma. Farmers have to own and manage data (intellectual property) generated on their farms in their own best interests, for today and tomorrow.

This means farmers and farming associations have to collaborate within a region to ensure the insights generated from shared data are leveraged sustainably and in farmers’ best interests.

Aquaculture is both an art and science. It can be full of uncertainty and risk. Weather, disease and the effects of climate change are all factors affecting individual farmers who are custodians of and dependent upon the natural environment.

Disruptive influences or technologies

Business cases

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