Whitebait farming will stop shortages claims company involved…

On The Level

A whitebaiter near Timaru.

Whitebaiter near Timaru.

A whitebait boom or bust?
Whitebait will be available year-round and there will never be shortages again, claims a company that has started quietly farming the juvenile fish delicacy.

A company chaired by National Party supporter Sir Wira Gardiner, the husband of Education Minister Hekia Parata, is about to start selling farmed whitebait to restaurants.

Premium Whitebait, a company chaired by National Party supporter Sir Wira Gardiner, the husband of Education Minister Hekia Parata, is about to start selling farmed whitebait to restaurants.

It’s hoped the business will become a multi-million-dollar operation, eventually selling whitebait through retail outlets and exporting them.

The company, Premium Whitebait, has signed a contract with Mahurangi Technical Institute (MTI) in Warkworth, which developed the technology to breed whitebait in captivity, to take the venture to market.

Des McEnaney, president of the West Coast Whitebaiters Association, was sceptical about what a farming venture…

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