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Ed Sheeran

Lake Rotoaira Forest Trust keen on land based trout farming around Lake Rotoaira

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The Māori owners of a lake under Mount Tongariro are backing an attempt to allow trout farming.

Parliament’s primary production committee is considering a petition from salmon farming pioneer Clive Barker for restrictions on the farming and sale of trout to be lifted.

Lake Rotoaira Forest Trust Project Manager Tiwana Tibble says the trust’s Tūwharetoa owners are looking closely at the debate, as their lake could be suitable for aquaculture.

He says an attempt to allow trout farming in the 1970s was thwarted when fish and game lobby campaigned against then-minister Duncan McIntyre, costing him his Hawke’s Bay seat, but the success of the salmon industry shows what can be done.

"Down in Twizel they've got farms at altitude there and they've got these whopping trout, because they feed off the food missed by salmon in the pens. That's a great example 40 years later where trout farming and recreational fishing can go hand in hand. We've got to come forward modern," Mr Tibble says.

Lake Rotoaira Forest Trust is pushing forward with plans to farm salmon in its waters.


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