…Second-generation abalone diver Brad Adams pioneered – through Ocean Grown Abalone – taking greenlip spats from an onshore hatchery and ranching them in near-wild conditions. Ranch manager and diver Mark Wall says at any one time there could be more than 2 million abalone on the ocean lease of 413 hectares. Two kilometres out to sea and about 22 metres down, the abalone are in the current, the water pushing through and keeping the abalone fed naturally.
Australia is one of the largest suppliers of wild abalone in the world, with a reputation for consistency and reliability, says Sydney-based seafood guru John Susman. The ranching, he says, is a really exciting proposition. The Japanese market appreciates the point of difference, he says. The ranched shellfish experience feed and water conditions that may “give them a wild flavour and texture that’s kind of unique… it’s appreciated in a culinary as much as a visual sense [in Asia]”.