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Curtin University
Centre of Excellence for Science, Seafood and Health
NEWS

[Posted: 1 September 2014]

Janet Howieson and Peter Jecks win Innovation Award

Yesterday, Dr Janet Howieson (Curtin) and Peter Jecks (Abacus Fisheries) won the Health Sciences Prize for Innovation in Education at the Curtin Innovation Awards held at Frasers Restaurant in West Perth.

Dr Janet Howieson and Peter Jecks have developed a more sustainable process to design and produce products from the waste created from processing seafood. Processing seafood is currently very inefficient, with 50-70 per cent of the caught weight going to waste – amounting to more than 10,000 tonnes per year in Australia alone.

Instead of going to landfill or being made into low-cost products such as fertiliser and pet food, Curtin researchers have found ways to meet the needs of niche consumer markets, in a cost-efficient way at industrial scale. Using waste from blue swimmer crabs, they’ve created and produced crabcakes which have been sold to high-end restaurants and delicatessens.

Everyone at CESSH is thrilled to congratulate Janet, Peter and all the team who had input into this extremely successful venture. Peter knew he had a high quality waste product and was looking for opportunities to develop new products from production waste. He approached Janet who then developed and facilitated a complex process which brought together an amazing group of people from within the seafood and restaurant  industries, with the culmination of several years of hard work (led by both Janet and Peter) being the Blue Swimmer Crab Cakes which had now sold upwards of 1.1 million units.

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