This sector is small but the potential for further development is exciting as Whangārei has good existing infrastructure and excellent growing conditions for candidate species including kingfish.

Globally, wild fisheries are struggling to keep up with the demand for fresh seafood. Aquaculture is the key to satisfying this growing worldwide demand for high-quality, protein rich seafood. With the emergence of kingfish farming and further growth expected for mussel farming, the potential for this sector is great.

Whangārei is home to the National Institute of Water and Atmospheric Research (NIWA) facility, Australasia's largest aquaculture research centre and land-based production facility, including a commercial recirculating aquaculture system kingfish farm (operational in late 2022).

The centre boasts New Zealand's largest team of aquaculture specialists and supports a growing aquaculture industry throughout New Zealand. The site forms an international hub for aquaculture and marine science research and development, with NIWA hosting researchers from universities and institutes throughout the world. 


For more information about the land-based aquaculture systems for growing kingfish, check out

The Northland Regional Council is responsible for administering nearly all aspects of marine farming in our region.  These include:

- Monitoring existing farms

- Ensuring compliance with resource consent conditions

- Granting resource consents for new marine farms

- Writing the policies and rules determining where new aquaculture can and cannot be undertaken.