Petuna Aquaculture sells remaining 50% stake to the Sealord Group

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New Zealand’s second-largest seafood company now own 100 per cent of Tasmanian salmon and trout farmer.

In a press release on Thursday, Petuna writes that it has have sold their remaining stake in its trout and salmon farming business.

Petuna Aquaculture is one of Tasmania’s (Australia) three main salmon farmers with Tassal and Huon.

The company is privately owned by the Peter and Una Rockliff who established it in 1948 and are still involved after 70 years. The New Zealand-Japanese firm Sealord group bought a 50 per cent stake in the firm nine years ago and now own 100 per-cent ownership of the rest. However, the family will retain full ownership of their wild fisheries operations.

“It’s like parting with a family member,” said Peter and Una Rockliff in a joint statement. “But it’s time to provide the opportunity for the business to further develop into one of the world’s finest aquaculture enterprises.”

Sealord Chairman Whaimutu Dewes paid tribute to the Rockliffs who diversified into aquaculture in 1990. “Their contribution to the industry and to the principles of sustainable aquaculture are a matter of historic record,” he said. “Their pioneering spirit will always remain at the heart of Petuna’s culture.”

Petuna Aquaculture CEO Ruben Alvarez said that it was business as usual for the now foreign-owned company. “We have made significant gains over the past few years and the prospects for future growth and development are very encouraging,” he said.

“Petuna already has plans for expansion in Tasmania’s north-west and in the south, which are subject to continuing community consultation and regulatory approval.”

Established in 1961, Sealord is half-owned by all Maori through Moana New Zealand and half-owned by Japanese fishing giant Nissui.