Aquaculture New Zealand (AQNZ) has appointed Gary Hooper its new Chief Executive.
AQNZ Chairman Peter Vitasovich yesterday announced Gary would take on the leadership role after three and a half years as the organisation’s marketing director.
“Gary has worked closely with many of the sector’s stakeholders in the area of international market development and has a strong understanding of the opportunities and challenges facing the sector. He is a well-known, and well respected member of New Zealand’s aquaculture community and he will be an asset to the organisation and the wider industry,” Peter said.
Before joining the organisation in August, 2008, Gary worked in a number of key executive commercial and marketing roles with some of New Zealand’s leading brands including Shell and Fly Buys.
Aquaculture is best known in New Zealand and around the world for its production of the iconic Greenshell™ Mussels, King Salmon and Pacific Oysters. Aquaculture has become a significant, sustainable primary industry employing more than 3000 New Zealanders and generating over $400 million of revenue in 2011. It is also a sector with tremendous potential as international demand for quality seafood continues to grow.
“Our nurtured seafood is revered by international chefs around the world and enjoyed daily by kiwi consumers. Growth in the industry will create much needed regional jobs within the sector and in supporting industries as well as deliver valuable export earnings , but it is important that we work in balance with the environment and respect the needs of other water users,” Gary said.