By Peter Cai
Though the Stehr family fortune owes a lot to demand from the Japanese market, Marcus is concerned that they are losing their premium place in Japan and the exchange rate is working against them. “We have been selling our southern bluefin tuna for many years.
The business really took off when the Stehrs realised there was a real consumer market for the tuna in Japan. “We knew the Japanese like tuna, like to eat raw sashimi meat and we knew they would pay high premium price for it,” said Marcus, who is the managing director of the Stehr group.
Given the dwindling stock of wild southern bluefin tuna, the Stehrs want to develop a sustainable business model. “Part of our vision was the diversification into fully-blown aquaculture industry from eggs to plates, to complete the full life-cycle of southern bluefin tuna,” he said.
He fell in love with a local girl, Anna, who worked as a clerk at local court house. “He took a liking to her and Port Lincoln,” said Marcus Stehr, Hagen’s son and heir to family fortune.
When Prince Charles and Duchess of Cornwall visited their antipodean realm in 2012, they were treated with sashimi made from a 40-kilogram southern bluefin tuna donated by Port Lincoln fishing baron Hagen Stehr AO.
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