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Western Rock Lobster Market Report | December-January 2020


Please read on for updated information regarding catches in the western rock lobster fishery, rock lobster exports from Western Australia, and lobster imports into China. This month’s markets content also includes some commentary on the increased supplies of local lobster over the recent Christmas and holidays period.

Catch Data for the Western Rock Lobster Fishery

The most recent ‘Catch Balance Graph By Zone (Warehouse)’ report was generated by DPIRD on 28 January. It provides information on entitlement landed within the West Coast Rock Lobster Managed Fishery (WCRLMF), on a monthly and zonal basis.

WCRLMF landed catch, monthly


WCRLMF landed catch, monthly, northern zones


WCRLMF landed catch, monthly, Zone C


WCRLMF catch for the months of November and December


If you have any queries in relation to the report, please e-mail or contact the Rock Lobster Help Line 1300 574 071.


Rock Lobster Exports from Western Australia


Western Australia exports of rock lobster, value by product form, monthly


Western Australia exports of non-frozen rock lobster, quantity and unit value, monthly


Western Australia exports of non-frozen rock lobster, quantity by destination, December 2019 and December 2020


Lobster imports into China

China imports of lobster, value by product type, monthly


China imports of non-frozen spiny lobster, quantity by origin, monthly


China imports of non-frozen spiny lobster, unit value by origin, monthly


Increased quantities and lower prices for local lobster during the Christmas period

The recent and ongoing disruption of trade with China has resulted in an increased focus on supplying western rock lobster for local/domestic consumption (in addition to the pursuit of alternative international markets). Thankfully for industry, the pivot to domestic markets somewhat aligned with the seasonal increase in demand leading into Christmas and the summer holiday period.

Overall, it is estimated that around 400 tonnes of western rock lobster was sold domestically during December 2020, which is a figure approximately four times as large as would be normal for the period. Fishers have had to accept significantly lower prices for their catch than would otherwise have been expected but were able to continue generating income (as necessary to service expenses as they arise).

Further information regarding local supply (including in relation to the Back of Boat lobster sales mechanism) will be forthcoming in future WRL publications.