Role statement - Victorian Fisheries Authority

The Victorian Fisheries Authority (VFA) is established to promote sustainable and responsible fishing and fishing-related activities in Victoria. It is also a function of the VFA under Section 8(k) of the Victorian Fisheries Authority Act 2016 to work with land, water, waterway and coastal managers and public sector bodies to improve fisheries, respond to any emergency or undertake compliance and enforcement activities. 

The VFA is the control agency for shark hazards in Victorian waters and is a support agency for emergencies in the aquatic environment.


Critical task alignment / activity source



Publishing educational material on declared noxious aquatic species (website)



Publishing educational material on shark hazards (website)



Publishing information for the community on shark hazards

2.1, 2.2


Enforcement of regulations relating to shark attractants

5.1, 5.4


Supporting DELWP in the delivery of programs to reduce the incidence of cetacean entanglement and vessel strike from fishing activities

1.5, 2.2, 3.2


Response (including Relief)


VFA is the control agency for providing a co-ordinated response to shark hazards under the State Shark Hazard Plan



VFA is a key support agency for:


●  the relevant control agency responding to pollution of waterways



●  responding to cetacean stranding’s for either living or deceased animals under the Victorian Cetacean Emergency Plan and control agency for the management of shark hazards arising out of strandings

3.1, 3.2


●  responding to cetacean entanglements or impacts under the Victorian Cetacean Emergency Plan, including providing vessels and crew



●  providing boats and operators to assist in emergency response and logistics

3.2, 9.2, 10.1


●  responding to Blue-green algae blooms where these impact on fisheries and fishing

3.2, 16.1, 16.2


●  response to fish mortality (fish deaths) events, including an initial impact assessment and notifying the relevant control agency if the cause relates /is suspected to relate to hazards managed by that agency e.g. exotic animal disease, pollution, blue-green algae bloom

3.2, 11.1, 11.3,
16.1, 16.2, 16.3


●  responding to marine pest incursions



Enforcement of provisions under the Fisheries Act 1995 prohibiting bringing into Victoria, possession, transporting or release of declared noxious aquatic species

1.3, 5.4, 16.4, 16.5


VFA is a key support agency for DHHS:


●  responding to food contamination involving fish in Victorian waters

3.2, 16.2, 16.3


●  sampling of shellfish for marine biotoxin contamination

3.2, 16.1, 16.2


VFA is the lead Response Support Agency (RSA) for the functional area of fisheries (in Victorian waters), as shown in the Response Support table (Table 10)

Response Support table




Liaise with DJPR or other control agencies for relief or recovery activities affecting the fishing or aquaculture industries

3.2, 18.7


Assurance and Learning


For assurance and learning activities, refer directly to the agency for further information.