Raptis is strongly committed to protecting the environment by participating in responsible fishing practices and adhering to regulations and guidelines surrounding fisheries management. Our company is open to new innovations that increase sustainability of our oceans, thus ensuring we build a positive future for Australian fisheries and our business that relies upon sustainable fishing practices.
Bycatch is defined as any unwanted product that is caught during the fishing process and can include; undersized target species as well as non-target species such as turtles, sharks and rays. Bycatch is detrimental to the environment and also reduces the economic value of each catch. Raptis has employed the use of T90 trawl nets, which are constructed of thicker, more rigid twine allowing smaller individuals and some non-target species to escape. These nets also increase water flow making them easier to tow and thus reducing fuel consumption and subsequent air and water pollutants. A Bycatch Reduction Device (BRD) is also fitted to each net used by the Raptis fleet to reduce the impact of commercial fishing on non-target species. These BRD’s include Turtle Excluder Devices (TED’s), which are hard grids that are placed within the net and they act as a guide to allow turtles, sharks and rays to escape through a specialised opening in the net.
Raptis adheres to the Transport Operations (Marine Pollution) Act 1995, which regulates the deliberate and negligent discharge of ship-sourced marine pollutants into coastal waters. All Raptis crew are educated on the correct use, storage and disposal of oils and chemicals.
The Raptis fleets fish in The Northern Prawn Fishery (NPF) and The Great Australian Bight Trawl Fishery (GABTF). Both are managed by the Australian Fisheries Management Authority (AFMA) and require all fishing vessels to adhere to strict regulations in regards to Total Allowable Catch (TAC), size limits, prohibited take, gear restrictions and spatial and temporal closures. The NPF is also working towards gaining Marine Stewardship Council (MSC) certification. The MSC is an international non-profit organisation that actively works towards achieving sustainable fishing practices throughout the world. This certification will assist us to meet a growing consumer demand for certified sustainably caught Banana and Tiger prawns.
Our environmental management practices also apply to our land operations. We have identified that our key environmental impacts on land are:
- production of waste;
- hazardous chemical storage;
- and water usage.
We have many controls in place at our Brisbane site to minimise these impacts on the environment including:
- use of onsite bore water, use of onsite water tanks;
- waste minimisation practices including redistribution of offal to pet food and fertiliser companies;
- paper and cardboard recycling;
- and waste tracking practices inline with Waste Management Regulations 2000 and the Environmental Protection Act.