Two Mid-West businesses are working together to establish a rock oyster industry at the Abrolhos Islands thanks to funding through the McGowan Government’s Regional Economic Development (RED) Grants program.
The State Government has allocated $23.9 million over four years to the RED Grants program, administered by the nine Regional Development Commissions, providing $777,835 to the Mid-West region in the first round.
Geraldton-based, Abrolhos Island Oysters Pty Ltd and Australian Pearling Company Pty Ltd will receive $250,000 to assist with water and nutrient monitoring at the Abrolhos Islands site in order to obtain accreditation and classification as a harvest area for human consumption.
Rock oyster aquaculture is new in Western Australia, and this project provides the opportunity to explore potential growth and share learnings with other growers to help build the industry.
Dongara-based distillery Illegal Tender Rum Co will receive a grant of $137,000 to expand operations and help make Dongara a food and beverage tourism destination.
The company aims to more than double its production, increase venue capacity and provide local employment opportunities. The distillery will also explore future opportunities to develop ‘ready to drink’ products for China.
Eight Mid-West projects will receive RED Grants focusing on new industry development and tourism expansion.
As stated by Regional Development Minister Alannah MacTiernan:
“The Mid-West region is rich in natural resources and offers a number of investment and growth opportunities in aquaculture, broad acre farming, digital technology, sustainable energy production and tourism.
“The RED Grants provide the opportunity to focus on community-led projects which will boost our regional economy, create jobs and add vibrancy to towns.
“By investing in a variety of regional initiatives, the State Government is helping to grow Western Australia’s regional areas into thriving and sustainable communities.”
Successful RED Grants for the Mid-West region
|Abrolhos Island Oysters / Australian Pearling Company||Western Australia Rock Oyster Aquaculture Cluster – Mid West||$250,000|
|Illegal Tender Rum Co Pty Ltd||Illegal Tender Rum Co Expansion||$137,000|
|National Trust of Australia (WA)||Enhancing the Historic Victoria Hospital and Convict Gaol Precinct||$119,000|
|Shire of Northampton||Refurbishment Northampton Old School Buildings||$74,935|
|Dongara Marine||Enhanced Manufacturing Capability through CNC||$68,500|
|One L of a Good Feed Catering & Events||Renovation and Café Fit Out of the Old Carnamah Church Building||$50,000|
|Chapman Valley Fishing Park||Upgrade of Tourism Facilities||$50,000|
|Shire of Irwin||Mid West Online Events Calendar and Travel Guide||$28,400|