Sat 29 Jun

Supplier Spotlight: Troy Billin

For over two decades, Troy Billin has been a driving force in the world of professional fishing, supplying a diverse array of high-quality seafood to ۵ַ from his local waterways of the Clarence River. His commitment to sustainability and excellence has earned him recognition as a Master Fisher by OceanWatch, and as the winner of the 2024 Seafood Excellence Awards in the prestigious Primary Producer (NSW) category. 

In celebration of International Day of the Fisherman (June 29), we’re shining the spotlight on Troy and his career, to give you a window into the life of one of the state’s most successful and well-respected fishers. 

Troy Billin's path to professional fishing began in Yamba, along the Clarence River. His early fascination with recreational fishing ignited a lifelong dream of becoming a professional. Against the odds, Troy turned this dream into reality, starting with a modest 14-and-a-half-foot tinny and unyielding determination. 

Troy's journey was far from smooth sailing. He purchased his first fishing business with minimal funds, acquiring no boats or gear. Despite these initial challenges, he made a mark in the industry by targeting species like Snapper and Flathead off Byron Bay. His perseverance paid off as he secured key partnerships with local seafood outlets, including Bay Seafoods in Byron Bay, which played a pivotal role in his early success. 

Troy’s commitment to delivering top-quality seafood led him to become a key supplier to ۵ַ. Here, his prized catches find their way to the plates of seafood enthusiasts and esteemed chefs across New South Wales and beyond. But it doesn't end at the market; Troy's innovative spirit shines through his utilisation of SFMblue, ۵ַ’s digital trading platform, which connects him with wholesale buyers not only in New South Wales but also in Victoria, South Australia, and Queensland. 

Troy's fishing expertise extends to a diverse range of species, each with a different seasonal availability. From the highly-prized NSW Mud Crabs and Sprat – which he's famous for – to Bonito, Mackerel, Snapper, Flathead, Whiting, Bream, Sea Mullet, and Kingfish, his catch reflects the rich variety of marine life off Yamba's shores, and his commitment to ensuring sustainability by fishing alongside seasonal population peaks. 
 
For Troy Billin, the future holds exciting possibilities. With the establishment of his business Yamba Fisheries, he's taking his entrepreneurial spirit to the next level by marketing and selling not only his own catch, but also the products of other local fishers. This venture promises to be a hub of sustainability, quality, and transparency, with a focus on providing consumers with the freshest and finest seafood. 

Troy Billin's journey from a humble tinny to becoming one of the industry’s most well-respected primary producers is a testament to his passion, dedication, and a deep connection to his craft. His story is a celebration of Australian fishing, sustainable practices, and a testament to the abundance of the sea. As he continues to cast his nets into the pristine waters off Yamba's shores, Troy Billin remains an inspiration to both aspiring fishers and seafood enthusiasts alike. 

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