About Sea Urchin Harvest


Sea Urchin Harvest

Sea Urchin Harvest Pty Ltd is an award winning Australian family owned business that specializes in diving, processing and selling fresh Sea Urchin Roe. We are located in Tomakin on the South Coast of New South Wales, where there is an abundance of premium Sea Urchins

The delicate but large Sea Urchin Roe found along this coast line have a maximum natural sweetness which is unique to the NSW South Coast.

Sea Urchin Harvest is the diver. Chris has been diving for over 35 years and is regarded as one of the best Sea Urchin divers in Australia. His dedication to premium product and freshness, combined with his knowledge of the best spots to dive, set Chris apart from other divers.

The harvesting of Sea Urchin Roe is a delicate process as the Roe can easily be damaged. Sea Urchin Harvest has a highly experienced team of processors dedicated to processing to the highest standards in our “A” rated HACCP factory.

Our processing factory in Tomakin is only 5 minutes drive from the boat ramp. This means we can get the Sea Urchins quickly to our factory, allowing us to control the temperature better and deliver the freshest and most premium Sea Urchin Roe in Australia for same day shipping.

At Sea Urchin Harvest we dive to order and are confident that the taste of our Sea Urchin Roe will leave you satisfied.

Please Contact Diver to discuss an order. We look forward to your call.

The Diver

Our Sea Urchin Roe diver, Chris Theodore, has been diving the waters off the South East Coast of Australia ever since he was a young teen and has now been diving commercially for over 25 years.

Chris comes from a large family of divers, who have been diving along this coastline since 1960. His father, Chris Snr, was a successful Abalone diver who introduced his three sons to diving at a very early age.

Chris Snr would take his boys out on many of his diving trips, allowing the boys to jump in beside him and learn first hand what it took to be a great diver. Those early experiences diving with his father and the knowledge and expertise that was handed down, made Chris the diver he is today.

 

Regarded as one of the best Sea Urchin divers in Australia, Chris's dedication to premium product and freshness, combined with his knowledge of the best spots to dive, set Chris apart from other divers. On any given day Chris will search between Ulludulla in NSW, to Mallacoota in Victoria and spend at least five hours under water sourcing the best Sea Urchins. Typically Chris would average around 200kg an hour of live Sea Urchins

With the processing plant located on his property at Tomakin in NSW, Chris is able to deliver his premium grade Sea Urchins, within hours, while also overseeing all quality control. This means Chris can deliver the freshest and most premium Sea Urchin Roe products in Australia the same day.

Chris's love for the ocean extends further then diving. If the ocean is too rough, Chris will probably be seen surfing somewhere along the coast with his three young kids and wife, or fishing with his mates. Always in the ocean, Chris a true waterman at heart.

CONTACT DIVER

Why We're Fresher

We dive the Centro Urchin (Centrostephanus) which is a long-spine urchin which can get up to 30 centimetres in diamater. This type of Urchin can form extensive Urchin barrens and are generally located on rocky reefs, in shallow reef habitat.

The Centro Urchin is a native species of New South Wales (NSW) but has grown in population along the East Coast of Australia and can now be found as far down as Port Davey on the South West coast of Tasmania.

The delicate but large Sea Urchin Roe have maximum natural sweetness which is unique to the NSW South Coast.

From Ulladulla in NSW to Mallacoota in Victoria where we dive (check map here), there is a very large population to source from. The ocean floor is full of very luscious kelp for the Sea Urchins to feed off and combined with the pristine clear waters of the South Coast, this area breeds the best Sea Urchins in Australia on a consistent basis.

The best months to dive for Sea Urchin Roe along this coastline is generally from December through to June, when the Roe is large and is at its peak flavor.

With our processing factory located in Tomakin, NSW, and over looking Broulee Island and down to Montague Island near Narooma, we are always monitoring the weather conditions and first in the water to dive.

Chris does a lot of diving close to our home and processing factory in Tomakin and some days we can actually watch Chris diving off Broulee Island. With the boat ramp only 5 minutes drive away, we can get the Sea Urchins quickly to our processing factory, which allows us to control the temperature much better and deliver the freshest and most premium Sea Urchin Roe in Australia the same day.

Contact Diver for further information

Footprint

A commercially viable sea urchin fishery is valuable in the restoration of the kelp forest, and fish habitat.

Sea Urchin Harvest has been dedicated to the environment and sustainability since we launched in 2008. Our goal to restore the local kelp forest and fish habitat (which has been lost to Centrostephanus rodgetsii urchin along the east coast of Australia) via a commercially viable sea urchin fishery, has proven a great success.

 

Sea Urchin Harvest is a company that takes a positive stand for marine life. Sea Urchins play a key ecological role in determining the distribution and abundance of benthic macro algae, particularly kelps. But when urchin population numbers get out of control the results are devastating for the reefs and fish habitat.

 

The Centrostephanus rodgersii urchin is located in very large numbers up and down the south east coast of Australia. Its very destructive feeding behavior is characterized by dense feeding aggregations (or fronts) of large individuals migrating across the substratum at speeds of 1 to 4 m per month, consuming all erect algae and creating barrens where sea urchins are able to live for decades with very little food supply.

The importance of the kelp forest for reproduction and survival of commercially valuable species of fish and crustaceans (abalone and lobster) is the reason why Centrostephanus rodgersii sea urchins are considered a pest up and down the south east coast of Australia.

When the sea urchins are removed from the barrens, by hand by our commercial divers, seaweeds rapidly colonize the substratum. Thus improving the fish habitat.

In areas that have been commercially harvested for urchin, the kelp forest regenerates in a matter of a year or two. Thus the productivity of the kelp forest is restored by a commercial fishery capable of significantly reducing the Centrostephanus rodgersii sea urchin population.

Sustainability

Sea Urchin Harvest is a company that takes pride in its holistic view of the sustainability of the industry. The people and the environment. It is all connected and both vital to the longevity of the industry.

Sustainability generally is a characteristic of a process or state that can be maintained at a certain level indefinitely. And this is our goal at Sea Urchin Harvest.

Longevity - Sustainability. Sustainability of the industry relies on care and respect for our staff, for our reefs and for our marine life.

We are one of the few businesses that truly can say ‘WE ARE SUSTAINABLE’. A true WIN WIN WIN!!! Win for Employment. Win for the Environment/Fish Habitat. And Win for the consumer.

 

Employment: The process of harvesting and processing and distributing sea urchin roe is very labour intensive. We provide many jobs to regional N.S.W. Environment: By carefully harvesting sea urchin by hand and only picking the best urchins for market, we are helping to restore local fish habitat. By picking the best urchin and leaving the rest to fatten we also improve productivity of the fishery and quality of the roe.

 

And the consumer WINS, as they can enjoy great tasting sea urchin roe and know that they are helping create jobs and improve the local marine environment.

Sea Urchin Harvest has been recognised for its contribution to the environment by being awarded the Excellence in Environmental Practice at the recent 2017 Sydney Fish Market Excellence Awards. Click here to learn about our award.

Contact Diver for further information.