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Economic prospects for freshwater crayfish (Yabby) in Western Australia

Tull, M. (1996) Economic prospects for freshwater crayfish (Yabby) in Western Australia. Review of Marketing and Agricultural Economics, 64 (3). pp. 325-335.

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Since the 1980s Western Australia has developed a significant commercial aquaculture industry, catering both to domestic and overseas markets. However, the limited scale of output, especially in the yabby industry, has been a major constraint on further expansion of sales. Currently, the industry is based on the cultivation of freshwater crayfish (yabby) in existing farm dams. There are about 100,000 farm dams in Western Australia but only about 6,000 are currently used for commercial yabby production. Thus one way to boost output is simply to persuade more farmers to utilise them for commercial yabby production. However, farm dams produce low yields and it is also necessary to investigate the potential for more intensive farming with purpose built dams. This paper examines the economic feasibility of yabby aquaculture using the internal rate of return. The main findings are that intensive farming is non-viable but semi-intensive farming and farming of existing dams is viable, although the former is only marginally so.

Publication Type: Journal Article
Murdoch Affiliation: Murdoch Business School
Publisher: Division of Marketing and Agricultural Economics, Dept. of Agriculture, New South Wales
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