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Seafood Industry Forum

The Seafood Industry Forum (SIF) provides the NSW Minister for Primary Industries and the NSW Food Authority with a consistent and concise forum for dealing with matters about the Seafood Safety Scheme including:

  • its continuing operation
  • any proposed amendments.

Section 105 of the Food Act 2003 requires the Food Authority to consult with industry sectors affected by a regulatory Food Safety Scheme.

The Seafood Safety Scheme, under Food Regulation 2010, began in June 2010.

Before then, consultation between the Food Authority and the seafood industry sector was conducted through the NSW Seafood Industry Conference which was established in 2004.

A review of the Food Authority’s consultative committee arrangements was conducted in 2011-12. The Minister sought to refresh the existing structures and membership to ensure they are contemporary and representative of the needs of industry and government.

As a result of the review the Minister decided to establish a new Seafood Industry Forum for consultation, as required under the Food Act 2003. The forum continues under the Food Regulation 2015.

The Food Authority invites organisations that cover different aspects of the food safety scheme to nominate a representative. Membership appointments are for two-year terms and the committee is chaired by the Food Authority.

The forum’s membership is designed to bring expertise and new ideas to enhance strategic focus and issue resolution to the seafood industry sector.


SIF provides feedback to the Food Authority and the Minister for Primary Industries on issues relating to seafood industries including:

  • food safety policy and practices
  • the Seafood Safety Scheme
  • labelling, food handling and hygiene
  • investigating and prosecuting businesses and individuals engaged in deceptive or misleading conduct.


Terms of Reference

The committee operates under agreed Terms of Reference.

The primary objective of the Forum is to contribute to the Food Authority’s goal of ensuring the production and sale of seafood which is safe and suitable for human consumption by advising on policy and practices introduced into seafood safety schemes and developed through a consultative process.

The Forum has the function of consulting with the Food Authority on food safety schemes under the Food Act 2003 (NSW) relating to the seafood industry.

The Forum and the Food Authority consult on all seafood industry matters covered by the provisions of Food Regulation 2015 including:

  • consultation on emergency management preparedness for the sector
  • consultation on emerging and contentious issues and risks for food safety
  • seeking input for provision into the development and implementation of national primary production food safety standards
  • consultation on other issues in which the seafood industry has an interest such as imported seafood standards, health claims and industry based education
  • assistance in the design and conduct of industry specific product-based surveys
  • regulatory effectiveness.

Where considered appropriate, the Forum may establish sub-committees to address specific issues between scheduled Forum meetings.

In addressing issues, the Forum will take into account, where appropriate, the policies and practices of interstate and overseas government food agencies and industry organisations.

Where appropriate, members will provide industry updates and current issues at each Forum meeting.

The Food Authority may continue to provide the Minister for Primary Industries with its own advice on issues that come before the Forum.

Membership & Charter

Representation Name Position Organisation Email
Chair - NSW Department of Primary Industries Dr Lisa Szabo Director, Food Safety - CEO Food Authority (Senior Branch Support Officer) 
Sydney Fish Market Mr Erik Poole Supply & Business Development Manager Sydney Fish Market Pty Ltd
Association of Fishermen’s Co-operatives Mr Ross Fidden Chair Commercial Fishermen’s Co-operative Ltd
Clarence River Fishermen's Co-operative Ms Danielle Adams CEO Clarence River Fishermen's Co-operative
Seafood Importers Association (SIAA)  Mr Mark Boulter Executive Office (SIAA); Director (Safe Sustainable Seafood) Seafood Importers Association (SIAA)
NSW Aquaculture Association Inc Mr Russell Sydenham Committee Member Australian Aquatic Biological Pty Ltd
Professional Fishers' Association Ms Tricia Beatty CEO Professional Fishers' Association Inc.
Seafood wholesale / processing sector Mr Matthew Wilkinson National Quality Manager Tassal Group Ltd
Master Fish Merchants Association of Australia Mr Kerry Strangas Chair The Master Fish Merchants' Association of Australia
NSW Department of Primary Industries Ms Melissa Walker Team Leader Aquatic Biosecurity Policy and Programs
NSW Department of Primary Industries Dr Sarah Britton NSW Chief Veterinary Officer & Group Director Animal Biosecurity
NSW Department of Primary Industries Mr Ian Sanders Director, International Engagement
NSW Department of Primary Industries Mr Peter Day Director, Compliance & Integrity Systems


Enquiries regarding the SIF can be made by contacting the relevant industry representative or the NSW Food Authority helpline at: