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Buying seafood this Christmas? Buy local.

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Federal MP Steven Ciobo is calling on Gold Coasters to support their local fishermen this Christmas and buy seafood caught on their doorstep, rather than imported produce.

“Our fishermen are struggling at the moment, despite usually strong sales over Christmas, due to mass amounts of imported seafood being purchased at a slightly cheaper price,” Mr Ciobo said.

“While customers save a few dollars through some imported produce, they’re actually helping cripple the Gold Coast trawler industry as our local guys just can’t compete with their overseas competitors.

“These holidays I am calling on all Gold Coasters purchasing seafood to choose local and help protect our market before it is forced to shut down.

“For years the Gold Coast fisheries industry has been a burgeoning market. Now, some men working on the trawlers are being forced to look elsewhere for work.

“Some say it is the worst year they have experienced as there simply is not a big enough demand for local seafood on the Gold Coast.

“Before we know it we will have trawlers shutting up shop because they’re unable to meet operating costs.

“Most families on the Gold Coast will at some stage go out and buy prawns these holidays. What I am asking is that they buy them from our local guys.

“Let’s show a little compassion for our fishermen and their families and purchase local seafood in a bid to help save the floundering trawler industry before it is too late,” Mr Ciobo said.