WHILE China's decision to stop crayfish imports was damaging to the Australian industry, the increased affordability of the shellfish meant a greater number of consumers were trying the rich delicacy, helping to increase its popularity.
That's one theory from Kirkbright Seafood fishmonger Rhys Kirkbright as to why demand has continued to stay so strong this festive season.
"The closure of Chinese market did have an effect on the industry and dropped the price, but now people have now gotten the taste of crayfish and are willing to pay a little more for it," he said.
Mr Kirkbright also theorised that money once spent on holidays and travel has since been put into house renovations, which has also aided demand.
"I feel people are wanting to show their new renovations off, hosting a special Christmas at home," he said.
"Plus with working from home, people have been a bit more organised and have gotten their hands on some crayfish."
Mr Kirkbright and wife Amanda opened their first retail store in late March, after few years of running a wholesale depot at Wingfield.
The couple had previously lived on the West Coast while Mr Kirkbright worked in a seafood compliance role, while Mrs Kirkbright hails from the Yorke Peninsula, where fishing and the coast is in her blood.
We know our fishermen, we speak with them every day - it makes a big difference to know what's coming off the boat.- RHYS KIRKBRIGHT
Mr Kirkbright said they spent 2.5 years mapping out their retail strategy, which includes a direct relationship with their suppliers.
"We know our fishermen, we speak with them every day - it makes a big difference to know what's coming off the boat," he said.
"It then helps us to let customers know what is available and at what price, plus we know the full journey of where the seafood comes from."
Mr Kirkbright said from the boat drop off at Pondalowie Bay, the live crays had a straight 4-5-hour trip to the shop, where they put straight into the pot to be "fresh as".
"There's no bad crayfish the way we cook them," he said.
"And where there's consistency, there's trust, and more willingness to pay for a premium product.
"When we started this business, we really wanted to make sure when people hear our name, they know our product is a consistent, good product and we don't let people down."
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Mr Kirkbright said orders had been solid since late November, with orders getting up to 150 a day and beyond in the week before Christmas.
"We sell tonnes and tonnes of shellfish this time of year, between Christmas and New Year," he said.
"The demand tapers off for a little bit in January, but then ramps right back up for Australia Day, then again for Valentines Day, and March then tapers off again.
"Hopefully with our new location, once we find out feet, the demand will continue."
Mr Kirkbright said the only thing missing this year were the really big prawns.
"It wasn't a great December prawn trip so the extra large and jumbo prawns are lacking in numbers," he said.
"But there is still plenty of prawns to go round."
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