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Shepparton’s new fish hatchery to provide 12 new full time jobs

By Liz Mellino

Shepparton's new native fish hatchery is set to offer 12 full time permanent jobs, with half of these supporting Indigenous employment.

Minister for Fishing and Boating Jaala Pulford was in Shepparton yesterday for the announcement which will see up to six Indigenous positions created once the new hatchery is completed in 2022.

Ms Pulford said the fish hatchery would provide local employment opportunities for people keen on a career growing Murray cod, golden perch, silver perch and freshwater catfish.

"Employing Indigenous people to grow native fish like Murray cod will provide valuable jobs for people around Shepparton," she said.

"This is a wonderful opportunity for Indigenous people who connect with fish to land a hands-on-job supported by industry experts and leading education institutions."

To assist Indigenous candidates pursuing the positions, the Victorian Fisheries Authority will partner with Melbourne Polytechnic and Deakin University next year to provide education, training and development opportunities.

Training will occur around Shepparton and online, as well as on-farm learning at the VFA's Snobs Creek hatchery near Eildon, and at private hatcheries throughout Victoria.

The two-year course will provide graduates with a Diploma of Applied Science, majoring in aquaculture, with the VFA currently exploring scholarships for high performing students completing the second year of the course to offer full-time employment.

"We are really pleased with the partnership with the local Indigenous community but also the innovative course work we have been doing with Melbourne Polytechnic and Deakin University so that people will have the qualifications and the skills that they need for what's going to be a world class fish hatchery," Ms Pulford said.

The fish hatchery is a flagship commitment of the government's $35 million Target One Million plan to get more people fishing and to grow millions of native fish annually to boost wild stocks for recreational fishers in Victorian rivers and lakes.

Indigenous people can register their interest in the training program by emailing [email protected]