Signature Oysters – Sustainable Stories

 In Collaboration, Sustainable Stories

Sustainable Stories No 12. Ewan McAsh – Signature Oysters.

At Fish & Co we are dedicated to sustainability not only for seafood but also in business. We thought it would be interesting to share a little background on our sustainable partners so you could get to know a little more about the people and their businesses that makes it all possible for us to deliver our delicious sustainable experience here at Fish & Co.
We would love to hear what you think or on ways we can improve on connecting sustainable stories?

Your Name Ewan McAsh

Where do you live?

Broulee on the NSW South Coast

Tell us a bit about yourself:

Originally from Moruya on South Coast of NSW I was always interested in aquaculture. After completing a Marine Science degree at Wollongong University, I was working on fish and prawn farms when my father Kevin suggested we go oyster farming. It was a great idea, oysters are very sustainable, they grow naturally in commercial quantities in our river systems, they require no feed or treatments and the South Coast is a fantastic area for growing them.

After 12 challenging years of farming with my father we now have one of the most modern and environmentally friendly oyster farms in NSW growing Sydney Rock, Pacific and Native (Angasi) oysters.

When I am not working I go surfing, kiting and diving, and generally enjoying the beach with my family.

Tell us about your business:

My company Signature Oysters is a collaboration of Australia’s best Oyster farmers working together to supply restaurants and oysters lovers.

Signature Oysters came out of my own experience growing and supplying oysters striving to achieve sustainable pricing and deliver better quality oysters to my customers. The traditional wholesale supply chain was not doing justice for live oysters; being to cold (0 – 4 degrees) and the provenance and story of the oysters was impossible to preserve. So I began supplying my best oysters direct from my farm to restaurants. It worked! But I was frustrated by not being able to consistently supply top quality oysters to chefs all year round. Under the Signature Oysters banner, I have recruited the best oyster farmers from every growing region in Australia so that we can source the best oysters from anywhere around the country every single day.

With Signature Oysters, we have created a new path to market that maintains the integrity and quality of our oysters, celebrates the amazing diversity of Australian Oysters, delivers a better oyster experience to oyster lovers and provides sustainable farm gate prices to oyster farmers.

What are your longer term goals for the business?

Australian oysters are amazing, we produce world class oysters with amazing diversity of regions with their own characteristics and flavours. Signature Oysters has given every chef and every oyster lover the ability to explore this oyster wonderland. Our goal is to do our job better, we will keep recruiting farmers and delivering a greater range of oysters.

Who are your customers?

People who love a fresh shucked oyster and want to know its story!

What does ʻsustainabilityʼ mean to your business?

Many things!

Oysters are naturally sustainable. However, from a production point of view, we continually strive to reduce our environmental impact by avoiding chemically treated timber instead of using recycled plastic posts and other plastic infrastructure and by keeping our machinery new and serviced.

Sustainability for the oyster industry means working with the community and other businesses to maintain healthy waterways.

Sustainability also means getting sustainable pricing, so that I can run a business, enjoy life and raise a family!

What is your businesses biggest achievement?

Our biggest achievement has been giving passionate farmers access to customers who happily pay a little more for their oysters. Getting that bit more money for their oysters gives farmers the confidence to invest back in the farm. I am truly passionate about Australian oysters and believe that Signature Oysters’ vision not only benefits Signature farmers but will grow the Oyster Industry as a whole.

If you could chose, what would be your last meal and with who (dead or alive)?

At this stage, it will likely be an oyster, just before harvesting a last minute order in the middle of an electrical storm with my faithful dripping wet dog Nacho by my side.

Either that or Earnest Hemingway as we have a mutual appreciation of adventure and mojitos!


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