AIDF Project 8 – Urchin waste utilisation

AIDF Project #8: Urchin waste utilisation – 2018

This project provided a funding contribution (matched by funds from the Abalone Overcatch Trust Fund) towards FRDC Project 2016/208 Waste to profit in urchin fisheries: developing business opportunities to ensure fishery sustainability and safeguard reef dependent fisheries from destructive urchin grazing.

This project demonstrated that Long-spined Sea Urchin (Centro) processing waste has potential application as an agricultural fertilizer and/or soil ameliorant. Results from this project showed high uptake of macro and micro-nutrients which could have commercial applications.

The research has led to the main urchin processor in Tasmania by volume (RTS PauaCo), investing in commercial scale waste processing technology capable of drying and grinding up to 5000 kg/day. The RTS PauaCo investment was assisted with Tasmanian Government Grant funding.

Further development is underway to test urchin waste applications on commercial crops in FRDC 2019-128: Assessing the benefits of sea urchin processing waste as an agricultural fertiliser and soil ameliorant.

Results of this project were presented at a Centrostephanus Forum at Blundstone Arena in late 2018 which was attended by over 60 people from government, industry, recreational and scientific sectors.

The FRDC report for this project may be accessed here.