Wednesday, July 31, 2013

31/07/13: Worms in aquafeeds; UK jellyfish invasion; shellfish poisoning testing

Worms are not an ingredient you often see listed as a feed ingredient but that might be about the change. 

Scientists at Makerere University Agricultural Institute Kabonyolo (MUARIK), Uganda, have started rearing the earthworms for use in fish feeds. 

The demand for alternative feed ingredients comes from fish farmers who argue that existing commercial feeds are too expensive.

The worms enjoy a diet of maize bran, food remains, cow dung and water and are sold in one kilo tins.

It's not aquaculture but I really wanted to share this film and photos of jellyfish in the UK.

Since the spell of warm weather, UK waters have seen a boom in the amount of  these fascinating creatures.

Neogen Europe Ltd has added to its comprehensive range of tests for the seafood industry with the introduction of rapid tests to detect the toxins that cause amnesic shellfish poisoning (ASP) and diarrhetic shellfish poisoning (DSP).

Neogen’s new Reveal® 2.0 for ASP detects ASP-causing toxins at a level of 20 parts per million (ppm), and Reveal 2.0 for DSP detects DSP-causing toxins at 160 parts per billion (ppb). Both are one-step rapid tests, and are compatible with U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) and European Union Commission permitted levels.

Both new shellfish toxin tests offer easy extraction processes, meaning they are on-site field tests capable of being used on a boat, and are used with Neogen’s innovative AccuScan® Pro Reader that provides consistently accurate and reliable results.

“The combination of the new tests and test reader provide an unparalleled ease in achieving consistently accurate results when testing for these toxins,” says Steve Chambers, Neogen Europe. 

“The AccuScan Pro Reader completely eliminates the variance in interpreting test results that can exist when only using a visual appraisal, especially with inexperienced testers. It also provides a very easy method of storing and analysing test results - which is becoming increasingly required as many nations move to reduce the risk posed by these shellfish toxins.” 

an image showing a jellyfish in Adriatic Sea.
an image showing a jellyfish in Adriatic Sea. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)
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Chris Ninnes, CEO, Aquaculture Stewardship Council (ASC)

Chris Ninnes took up his position as CEO of the Aquaculture Stewardship Council (ASC) in October 2011. Before joining the ASC, he worked for the Marine Stewardship Council (MSC) as deputy chief executive and director of operations where he managed the European, American and Asia-Pacific commercial teams and the standards team in the UK. Ninnes has also been active within ISEAL since 2005 in the role of vice chair and member of the executive committee of the Board and the finance committee.

This interview appeared in the July August edition of International Aquafeed magazine

Where does the need for certification stem from?

Aquaculture is currently the fastest growing food production system in the world. However, as the aquaculture sector expands so does its footprint on the environment and society.
Best practice standards for responsibly farmed seafood can help drive change and promote industry innovation through market-driven incentives. These market incentives drive the broader uptake of best practices within the industry and will ensure it can develop with much reduced negative impacts on the environment and on society.
Voluntary certification only works if the best performers can distinguish themselves from the median, and certification programmes such as the ASC’s recognises and promotes the sale of certified farmed fish through the use of an on-pack logo. Certification is also complementary to public policy initiatives that seek to reduce impacts through regulation and the two approaches are additive. Regulation typically provides a set of requirements that all must comply with and certification promotes broader uptake of innovation that builds on this.

There are many certification programmes, what makes the ASC different?

There are actually relatively few aquaculture certification programmes that have been established to engage with the global industry. There are more programmes that have restricted coverage of species or of geographic scope, but these respond to niche opportunities within an increasingly global market place.
The ASC’s global certification programme encourages the use of best practices to reduce environmental and social impacts and the coverage of these two areas is extensive. The ASC’s standards focus on farm-based impacts and the connections that farm practices have on broader environmental impacts linked to how feed is sourced and how water is conserved. They do not cover directly food safety or animal welfare issues, which other aquaculture standards do.

The ASC has recently signed a memorandum of understanding (MoU) with GLOBALG.A.P and GAA. What are reasons for doing this?

Yes, this is a very exciting development for ASC as well as for our shared customers. ASC, GAA and GLOBALG.A.P. collectively believe that we can improve the value and efficiency of our certification programmes by collaborating on the initiatives identified in the MoU. By working together we can achieve our mutual goal more efficiently - that is to support, recognise and promote a more sustainable aquaculture industry.

How is feed covered by ASC standards?

Feed is widely covered in all our species-specific standards and broadly they address the sourcing of ingredients and the efficiency of feed use. The next step will be to combine what has already been developed through the Dialogues into a more consistent ‘ask’ towards the feed producing sector.
The ASC also seeks to engage other aquaculture programmes in the development of a common approach to feed. This will not necessarily mean we will have the same demands, but these demands will be developed from a common framework that will also ease the burden of supplying responsibly sourced feed to the aquaculture industry.

What role can the feed industry play in ensuring responsible aquaculture?

Feed is the most costly input in fish farming. This in itself has driven innovation in feed composition and increased efficiency of use. The production and use of feed represent a major part of the environmental impact of aquaculture. The capture of fish to produce meal and fish oil, land-based production of soy beans and oil palms, the largely unknown impact of other key ingredients and the impacts from the fishing and farming operations themselves all contribute to the environmental footprint of feed production.
There are many steps that can be taken to improve the profile of these raw materials. Starting from knowing where and how they are produced, to seek improvements in their production methods through to demands that the raw material producers themselves credibly demonstrate that their products are produced sustainably.

Can you tell us about the Responsible Feed Project?

The Responsible Feed Project will create a new, globally applicable, ASC Feed Standard. The Standard will set out requirements for the aquaculture feed industry to operate on a more environmentally sound and socially responsible basis. The project will introduce a higher level of consistency into the way in which the aquaculture feed industry has been asked to address sustainability and social responsibility issues concerning feed.
After finalisation of this work, the ASC Feed Standard will be available to all who want to use it. I believe this approach is optimal for improving the environmental performance of the feed component of fish farming and for developing a cohesive and consistent tool on behalf of the broader aquaculture industry.

How can feed producers get involved with the ASC?

We actively encourage aquaculture feed producers of all sizes and nations to participate in the Responsible Feed Project. This could be through their involvement with the Technical Working Group, or by submitting formal comments as the drafts of the Standard are made available for public review.
We will also be seeking the support of feed manufacturers to take part in the pilot tests of the Feed Standard; which are expected to start by mid 2014. Furthermore, producers who would like to receive regular status updates can sign up for the Feed Project Newsletter. To subscribe or for more information about the Feed Standards Project, please contact Michiel Fransen

Warming seas alter fish neurology: Biodiversity to disappear over the next century

Climate change will see biodiversity in our seas decline massively over the next 100 years, according to scientists due to present their work to the IUPS 2013 Congress.

It is expected that global warming will see sea temperatures rise by 2-4 degrees. This, along with rising levels of carbon dioxide, is already causing dramatic changes to the central nervous system of fish in our seas with consequences for their future survival.

Professor Goran Nilsson from the University of Oslo says, “Some fish species will do well and some will do very poorly, so we will have much less biodiversity. A few species will take over at the cost of a lot of species that will disappear.

“At just a few degrees increase in temperature you see a big increase in the resting metabolic rate. Some species are using all their capacities just to pick up oxygen and have no energy left to feed, grow or reproduce. They are at an evolutionary dead end.

“In addition, we have seen that increases in carbon dioxide levels have big impact on fish behaviour, affecting their ability to avoid predators. Instead of shying away from the smell of a predator, the fish are attracted to it. They are also attracted to new plant smells, unusual environments, and they lose their lateralization which means it takes longer to make decisions when escaping a predator.”

Nilsson’s team identified the neurological mechanism underlying these changes in behaviour and survival. Elevated CO2 levels in sea water disrupt the function of a key brain molecule, called the GABA-A receptor.

Nilsson says, “We can cure the fish by blocking this receptor with a moderate dose of a drug called Gabazine. This can reverse the behavioral changes and the fish behave normally again. While we cannot fill the seas with Gabazine, this finding does give us some predictive power. We can now identify the animals most at risk of being affected, guiding us where to do future experiments.”

ball-and-stick model of CO2: carbon dioxide
ball-and-stick model of CO2: carbon dioxide (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

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Event: Aquarama and Pet Asia 2013 report

How does one gauge the success of a show? Is it determined by the number of people who pass through the doors...or is it based on the amount of business done by the exhibitors? Whichever criterion is chosen, there can be no doubt that Aquarama and Pet Asia 2013 (co-held at the Sands Expo and Convention Centre, Singapore, May 30 - June 2, 2013) were a resounding success according to event organisers.

While the number of countries represented by the exhibitors and trade visitors both remained virtually the same as in 2011 (21 and 72, respectively), no fewer than 55 percent of the exhibitors and 56 percent of the trade visitors still came from outside Singapore. Even more encouraging was the fact that attendance figures for, both trade and public visitors, showed increases of 8.3 percent and 16 percent, respectively. These are uplifting statistics for the organisers in view of the ongoing economic crisis in Europe and the US.

At a time when even the major pet industry shows are experiencing a drop in visitor numbers, or are having to adapt their frequency in tune with economic circumstances, UBM Asia Trade Fairs Pte. Ltd. has good reason to take heart, not just from the above statistics, but also from the feedback received from visitors and exhibitors alike.

For instance, one first-time exhibitor from Italy ranked the show as "Excellent" and immediately reserved a bigger booth for 2015. Another, this time a well-established and respected German Aquarama exhibitor, claimed – one full day before the end of the show – that the 2011 edition had been his company’s most successful Aquarama ever in terms of business done, and that the 2013 event was heading for the same outcome. A large Singaporean exhibitor who has been ever-present since the earliest days, likewise labelled this year’s edition a great success. And so on…

A recurring theme among exhibitors was that, as the crisis continues to bite in many countries, obviously affecting people’s decisions on whether or not to travel long distances at considerable expense to attend a show, those who do decide to attend have a genuine reason for doing go. Consequently, the percentage of serious buyers (as opposed to casual visitors or lookers) is much higher in times of economic difficulties. And it is this that ticked all the right boxes for the exhibitors this year. It is also this that has resulted in a large number of them already signing up for 2015.

This year, Aquarama and Pet Asia each had their own dedicated space, but co-located within the same halls, something that had a double positive impact. On the one hand, it gave Pet Asia its ‘independence’ and established it as an event in its own right, complete with its seminar programme, competitions and grooming, agility and obedience displays. On the other, Aquarama regained the 100 percent aquatic exclusivity that its exhibitors and traditional visitors love. The result therefore augurs well for the future of both events.

In the words of Jennifer Lee, project manager for the co-located events, "Staging Aquarama and Pet Asia 2013 has proved very challenging for the UBM team. We are therefore delighted with the positive response we’ve received from exhibitors and visitors alike, and take great encouragement from this as we begin planning for the 2015 editions."

And...speaking of 2015, the dates for Aquarama and Pet Asia have already been announced: May 28-31,  2015. The co-located exhibitions will be held, as always, in Singapore, with the venue being announced at a later date.

English: , .
English: , . (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

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Tuesday, July 30, 2013

New! IAF article: FOCUS | Probiotics - Effect of probiotic, Hydroyeast Aquaculture as growth promoter for adult Nile tilapia

In this article, FF Khalil, Ahmed Ismail Mehrim and Montaha E M Hassan of Al-Mansoura University, Egypt, discuss the effect of probiotic, Hydroyeast Aquaculture as growth promoter for adult Nile tilapia.

The use of probiotics for farm animals has increased considerably over the last 15 years. Once ingested the probiotic microorganisms can modulate the balance and activities of the gastrointestinal microbiota whose role is fundamental to gut homestasis.

 Click to read the full article.

Feature 4
FOCUS - Probiotics


BIOMIN offers sustainable animal nutrition products such as quality feed additives and premixes, which include solutions for mycotoxin risk management, a groundbreaking natural growth promoting concept as well as other specific solutions which address dietary requirements for swine, poultry, dairy and beef cattle as well as aquaculture. Click on image to visit company website.

30/07/2013: IRSC students receive aquaculture training; New Brunswick oyster farming; BFAR to register 300,000 fishermen

Harbor Branch Oceanographic Institute at Florida Atlantic University (HBOI-FAU), USA and Indian River State College (IRSC), USA, are offering an educational programme that will offer college students hands-on training in fish, molluscan and crustacean aquaculture in a cutting-edge facility.

HBOI has the largest marine food fish water reuse research facility in the southeast, as well as research culture facilities for shellfish.

The Canadian government is investing CAD$400,000 in a new program to accelerate the development of the country's oyster aquaculture industry.

The new programme is intended to help expand the industry, contribute to the economic diversification of coastal regions and stimulate long-term job creation. 

Some 300,000 fishermen stand to benefit from the National Program for Municipal Fisherfolk Registration (FishR) in Eastern Visayas, the Philippines.

During a recent FishR launch, Atty. Asis G. Perez, director, Bureau of Fisheries and Aquatic Resources (BFAR), Philippines, announced that the program will aim to fast-track, enhance and complete the nationwide registration as required under the Fisheries Code of 1998.

According to the Philippine Information Agency, upon completion of the program, the fisheries bureau will establish a national database, aiding local municipalities in managing, regulating, conserving and protecting fishery resources and establishing a comprehensive fishery information system. 

Photo of the top of an oyster
Crassostrea gigas - Pacific oyster (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Monday, July 29, 2013

New! IAF article: Chelated minerals in aquafeeds

Alvaro Rodriquez of Liptosa, Spain, writes about the importance of chelated mineral in aquafeeds.

Trace minerals found in mammals and birds are very important in the metabolism of the aquaculture species. The inclusion of trace mineral in aquafeeds is a guarantee to reach a good level of growth and development.

Click to read the full article.

Chelated minerals in aquafeeds

29/07/13: Tackling early onset sexual maturity in cod; farming beluga sturgeon; new home for Malta's aquaculture centre?

Early onset of sexual maturity is a problem in cod aquaculture because of negative effects on growth, feed conversion and health. Farmed cod that escape can also affect the genes of wild fish. 

Research fellow Adrijana Skugor of the food research institute Nofima has examined biological mechanisms that control the development of the sex organs in cod for her doctorate.

She has studied both individual genes and the whole cod genome to obtain more information about how the germ cells of the embryo develop into eggs and sperm.

Skugor has previously studied zebrafish and has made use of the knowledge she gained then. In zebrafish, the dead end gene (DnD) is necessary for sexual maturity, and Skugor has now been studying the significance of this gene in Atlantic cod.

She injected cod embryos with a molecule that blocks DnD and found that inactivation of the gene affected the development of germ cells also in cod. In addition, Skugor used micro array screening to study the effects of DnD inactivation in a wider context.

Several species dominate world aquaculture production. We read stories on salmon, trout, shrimp and tilapia on an almost daily basis. Of course the species deserve the attention they receive but once in a while it's refreshing to hear about something different. 

Mark Zaslavsky has spent a decade trying to become the first US aquaculture company to sell farm-raised beluga sturgeon.

In 2003 Zaslavsky's shipped brood fish from Germany to his farm Sturgeon AquaFarms, Florida, USA. 

Beluga sturgeon is the largest species of sturgeon, reaching 20 feet in length and a ton in weight in the wild. However, they are difficult to grow in the captivity as it takes 12 years for them to reach sexual maturity.

The next challenge for Zaslavsky is to get permission from the federal government to sell his decade-old fish.

Malta's National Aquaculture Centre may be moving home as government plans for a new site have been welcomed by various interested parties. 

Since 1988, the centre has been housed in the historic Fort San Lucian in Marsaxlokk. 

The Fondazzjoni Wirt Artna (the Maltese heritage trust) has supported the government's plans saying that relocation of Malta's aquaculture centre should be a top priority. The foundation has also suggested restoring a tower on the site and opening the fort as a tourist attraction.

The fort was originally built by the Order of St John in 1610 to ward off corsair attacks.

Beluga (sturgeon)
Beluga (sturgeon) (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

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The BioMar group is one of the leading suppliers of high performance fish feed to the aquaculture industry. The main business areas are feed for salmon and trout in Norway, the United Kingdom, and Chile, and feed for trout, eel, sea-bass, and sea-bream in Continental Europe. Click on the image to visit the BioMar website.

Friday, July 26, 2013

Video: Fish with 'human' teeth

This video should come with a warning; it's not for the faint hearted. I don't know why fish teeth are so disturbing, but these gnashers are truly terrifying!
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New! IAF article: Fine particle filtration in aquaculture

Katie Adema, journalist, Waterco Ltd, Australia, gives a comprehensive overview of fine particle filtration in aquaculture.
Aquaculture is the fastest growing animal production industry in the world; almost every region is experiencing rapid growth in the farming of fish, molluscs, crustaceans and aquatic plants. 

Worth over AUD$200 billion globally, the aquaculture industry has been growing at a faster rate than the world’s population for the past five decades, resulting in a very competitive marketplace today.

Such dramatic growth in the aquaculture industry has driven trends in filtration and oxygenation techniques forward to focus on high efficiency systems which offer fine particle filtration. This is due to the realisation that systems chosen purely for their low cost may not necessarily deliver profitable results. The health and growth of your fish depend greatly upon the filtration and oxygenation of the water in which they live. Therefore it is vital you invest in a quality system so you can produce large, healthy fish as quickly as possible to increase your profit margin. 

Click to read the full article

Fine particle filtration in aquaculture
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26/07/13: Water guns to fight Asian carp; the benefits of good fisheries policies; cash of Maine aquaculture firms; USA halts Marine Harvest Chile salmon imports

Water guns and pheromones are the new weapons in the fight against Asia carp in the Great Lakes and the Mississippi river system in the USA.

The new tactics are detailed in the president's 2013 Asian carp control plan.

The fish appeared in the river after escaping from flooded aquaculture ponds in the south. Since then,  the fish have disrupted native populations and the delicate balance of aquatic ecosystems. 

Good fisheries policies help the poor, says Steven Hall of WorldFish. This article looks at why fisheries policy makers and how they ''get it wrong". 

The Maine Technology Institute (MTI), USA has awarded grants and loans totaling US$1.66 million to 27 Maine companies.

The cash, which ranges from $1,116 to nearly $500,000, will help companies across a range of sectors, including aquaculture, develop innovative products. 

One of the aquaculture beneficiaries is Maine Coast Sea Vegetables, Franklin which received $19,842 to help develop seeded nets and ropes for seaweed aquaculture.

The USA has halted imports of salmon from Marine Harvest's Chilean farms due to contamination.

The FDA banned imports following the discovery of the carcinogenic chemical, crystal violet, in a shipment of salmon to the USA.

Marine Harvest has launched an official investigation into the source of the crystal violet.

English: Downloaded from http://fl.biology.usg...
English: Downloaded from Credits : US Geological Survey -- Florida Integrated Science Center, Gainesville (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

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Thursday, July 25, 2013

BC's salmon farmers moving ahead with recommendations of Cohen Commission

In a follow-up to the Cohen Commission recommendations, the BC Salmon Farmers Association (BCSFA) has continued work on gathering additional scientific evidence to further demonstrate that fish farms do not harm Fraser River Sockeye.

In his final report, released October 31, 2012, Justice Cohen found that there was not enough evidence to conclusively prove that fish farms were not impacting Fraser River sockeye. Immediately following the release of the report, the BCSFA and its members issued a statement supporting the recommendations.

One of those recommendations referred to net-pen salmon farms in the Discovery Islands-area, “If at any time between now and September 30, 2020, the minister of fisheries and oceans determines that net-pen salmon farms in the Discovery Islands pose more than a minimal risk of serious harm to the health of migrating Fraser River sockeye salmon, he or she should promptly order that those salmon farms cease operations.”

“What Justice Cohen found was an information gap in wild fish knowledge,” said Provincial Fish Pathologist, Dr Gary Marty. 

“We don’t know the potential interactions of all the variables that might be impacting wild fish health.  We have some knowledge of ocean temperature, salinity, plankton blooms, microbes, and fish farms, but if these factors are studied only in isolation, we might misunderstand the big picture. The challenge is that we don’t yet have all the pieces.”

As one of the first steps, the BCSFA organised a workshop, entitled Managing Risk and Defining Research Priorities. The purpose was to bring together a group of scientists, fisheries experts, and fish health specialists and veterinarians to objectively review risk management approaches and define research priorities for salmon aquaculture.

“Originally, our goal was to come away with a list of research priorities – an idea of where the knowledge gap is in terms of wild fish health and what research should be done,” said Mary Ellen Walling, executive director, BCSFA. 

“What we found was that there was a knowledge gap in terms of what research is currently being done on wild fish, who is doing the research and what it’s focusing on. There are a number of groups doing fish health research and they don’t always talk to each other, so there’s no database of that information.”

The next steps from the workshop will be to identify the current research that is in progress and bring it together for a second workshop, “Wild Salmon: Addressing the Knowledge Gap”, planned for September.

“Our goal with all of this work to have a good picture of both wild and farmed fish health,” said Walling. “The more we know, the better informed our farm management will be.”

A summary report on the first workshop has been posted to the BCSFA website:

The BCSFA represents salmon farm companies and those who supply services and supplies to the industry. Salmon-farming provides for 6,000 direct and indirect jobs while contributing $800-million to the provincial economy each year.


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BENEO-Animal Nutrition offers a broad range of nature based ingredients that improve nutritional value to the petfood, agri and aquafeed markets.  It covers speciality ingredients such as vegetable proteins, functional carbohydrates and prebiotics from chicory. Click on the image to visit the Beneo website.

25/07/13: Tracking chinnock salmon; LED nets warn sea turtles; sunburn protection from salmon

Ever had the feeling you are being watched? Usually we dismiss such feeling as paranoia, but for the chinnock salmon there's some truth behind the feeling.

Researchers at Project Watershed in collaboration with Fisheries and Oceans Canada, Puntledge River Hatchery have placed tracking devices on salmon to track their homing behaviour.
The objective of the study is to determine if a group of summer chinook salmon, which has imprinted in Comox Lake as juveniles, has greater success in reaching the lake as adults, compared to a control group which has been released directly to the river from the hatchery.

Glow in the dark fishing nets have been trialled in California, USA in a bid to stop sea turtles getting tangled up. The nets have been fitted with LED lights which warn passing turtles, and other animals, to steer clear. 

Previous research has shown that sea turtles can see light in the UV range but certain economically-important fish species can't.

With this in mind, researchers in Baja, California illuminated gill nets with battery-powered UV LED lights spaced at five-metre intervals along the net. Around 40 percent fewer turtles interacted with the LED net than a control net with LEDs turned off.

Could this technology applied to aquaculture?

Another reason to eat salmon! Research at Manchester University, UK, has concluded that the long chain omega-3s found in oily fish such as salmon can protect against sunburn.

English: Fishing net at Cuxhaven, Germany
English: Fishing net at Cuxhaven, Germany (Photo credit: Wikipedia)
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Wednesday, July 24, 2013

New! IAF article: Maintaining ingredient quality in extruded feeds

In this article from International Aquafeed July/August 2013, Mian Riaz, Texas A&M University, USA, looks at the impact of extrusion on finished feed quality.

Extrusion processing using a combination of moisture, pressure, temperature and mechanical shear, is been used in the feed industry. It results in physical and chemical changes such as ingredient particle size reduction, starch gelatinization and inactivation of enzymes. Mild extrusion processing usually enhances the digestibility of plant proteins.

Click to read the full article.

Maintaining ingredient quality in extruded feeds

Read the full issue.
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24/07/13: International Sturgeon Symposium; milkfish aquaculture in Kiribati; Alaskan salmon standoff; aquaculture in Fiji

Not all caviar is created equal. That's one of the messages from the  7th International Symposium on Sturgeon held in Canada this week. 

Mislabeling and confusing product names means that snail and lobster egg, herring and even seaweed have all been masquerading as caviar.

The Vancouver Aquarium has been blogging about the show and has posted a range of articles.

A Taiwanese technical mission is helping with milkfish aquaculture in Kiribati. 

The South Pacific nation will become the fourth country to raise the species, following Taiwan, the Philippines and Indonesia.

Alaskan fishermen and miners are at loggerheads over plans to expand a gold mine in the state. The fishermen are concerned that the mine risks poisoning the waters where Pacific salmon spawn.

If the numbers of salmon reaching the spawning grounds goes down, fishing permits are suspended.

What are the implications for aquaculture?

How much is aquaculture in Fiji worth?

Fiji's aquaculture is already worth several millions of dollars and its biggest contributors are pearl, freshwater prawn, tilapia fish, and seaweed.

Pearl nl: Parels de: Perlen
Pearl nl: Parels de: Perlen (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

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The Andritz Group is a global market leader in the supply of plants, equipment, and services for hydropower stations, the pulp and paper industry, for solid/liquid separation in the municipal and industrial sectors, the steel industry, as well as for the production of animal feed and biomass pellets. Click on the image to visit the Andritz website.

Tuesday, July 23, 2013

23/07/13: Staniford to pay costs to Mainstream Canada; Cermaq sells Ewos; Nova Scotia starts aquaculture strategy

Anti-salmon farming activist Don Staniford has been ordered to pay Mainstream Canada CAD$75,000 in costs after the British Columbia Court of Appeal overturned a previous ruling in favour of Staniford.

The court unanimously ruled that lower-court judge, Justice Elaine Adair, erred when she dismissed Mainstream Canada's defamation lawsuit against Don Staniford and upheld the campaigner's defence of fair comment.

In 2011, Staniford ran an anti-salmon farming campaign which included mimicking cigarette packages with warnings like "Salmon Farming Kills Like Smoking."

"It is my opinion that the facts upon which Mr Staniford's defamatory comments were based were not all notorious, contained in the defamatory publications or sufficiently referenced to be contained in other specified documents," said Justice David Tysoe.

The Court of Appeal granted Mainstream Canada special costs based on the activist's behaviour during the trial.

"The appropriate way to punish Mr Staniford for his reprehensible conduct in the litigation is to award Mainstream special costs against him," wrote Tysoe in the judgment handed down on July 22, 2013.

Cermaq has entered into a definitive agreement for the sale of its EWOS business to Altor Fund III GP Limited and Bain Capital Europe, LLP (collectively referred to as Altor and Bain Capital). The purchaser is a Norwegian company established by funds advised by Altor and Bain Capital for this purpose.

The transaction is structured as a sale and purchase of shares in certain Cermaq subsidiaries and certain assets and liabilities thereof. The aggregate agreed consideration implies an enterprise value of EWOS of NOK 6.5 billion, and will enable Cermaq to free up significant funds. Such funds will be used to reduce debt to ensure a continued solid capital structure and compliance with all financing commitments for the remaining operations, and to realize an extraordinary dividend to the shareholders. Subject to completion of the transaction, the company expects an extraordinary distribution to Cermaq's shareholders of around NOK 4.5 - 5.0 billion, or between NOK 48 and NOK 54 per share. 

The government of Nova Scotia, Canada is seeking feedback from communities in the first step in developing an aquaculture strategy. The project is set to take 18 months before it is submitted to the government. A draft will be released to the public before it is submitted in summer 2014.

More information on the process, including information on how to provide feedback...

Map of Nova Scotia, Canada
Map of Nova Scotia, Canada (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

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Monday, July 22, 2013

Mislabelled salmon sill on sale in the UK

The UK supermarket, Sainsbury’s, still selling mainland farmed salmon labeled as being from Skye, Lewis or Uist, almost eight weeks after apologising publicly for the ‘error’, according to the Salmon & Trout Association, Scotland (S&TA(S)).

The organisation has again called on Sainsbury’s to justify its claims of ‘responsibly sourcing’ or withdraw them.

The S&TA(S) originally made a complaint to the Advertising Standards Authority and Trading Standards on May 20, 2013. The complaint concerned claims made on Sainsbury’s ‘Taste the Difference’ Scottish salmon in relation to the geographical origins of the product and the unsubstantiated claims of “responsible management to protect and maintain the natural environment” at the farms concerned.

Almost eight weeks after Sainsbury’s admitted errors in attributing their product to the “fast flowing sea water locations around the Isles of Skye, Lewis and Uist”, Sainsbury’s in England are still stocking ‘Taste the Difference’ smoked salmon from mainland fish-farms in Argyll labeled as being from Uist, Lewis or Skye.

Hughie Campbell-Adamson, Chairman of S&TA(S), said, “The almost unbelievable state of affairs, whereby Sainsbury’s is continuing to pass off mainland farm-reared salmon as having come from the Hebrides, is bad enough.

The claims of responsible management at the farms concerned, as Sainsbury’s puts it, to protect and maintain the natural environment, need to be justified. If Sainsbury’s cannot justify their claims, then they must stop making them.”

The farms concerned are Rubha Stillaig, Meall Mhor and Tarbert South, all in Argyll.

English: Illustration of various salmon
English: Illustration of various salmon (Photo credit: Wikipedia)
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22/07/13: USA helps Myanmar farm tilapia; cost of algae blooms in Tasmania; aquaculture in Zambia

The USA is to provide technical assistance to help Myanmar with farming tilapia.

The US team of experts will give advice and farming technique to Myanmar to enable it to export high quality fish and fish products, the New Light of Myanmar quoted Myanmar Fisheries Federation as saying.

Algae blooms and sewage spills have cost the Tasmanian aquaculture and fishing industries AU$25 million according to a review by the  Department of Primary Industries, Parks, Water and Environment (DPIPWE).

Fishermen have called for greater spending on biosecurity measures to protect the future of Tasmanian aquaculture. At present around $300 thousand dollars is spent on testing fish for the aquaculture industry, but fishermen say that needs to be upgraded to $2 million reports ABC.

This article gives a quick overview of on the role of aquaculture in Zambia.

Fish is a critical source of dietary protein in sub-Saharan Africa, providing an estimated 22 percent of protein intake.

In Zambia, most of the aquaculture production comes from four species of tilapia (Oreochromis andersonii, Oreochromis macrochir, Oreochromis niloticus and Tilapia rendalli). Oreochroomis niloticus is not an indigenous species but still it is cultured by most farmers because of its favourable biological characteristics.
Oreochromis niloticus niloticus Syn.:Chromis n...
Oreochromis niloticus niloticus Syn.:Chromis niloticus (Photo credit: Wikipedia)
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Amandus Kahl

More than 130 years of experience in plant and machine manufacture has made Amandus Kahl a respected manufacturer and supplier of extruders, compound feed presses, wood pelleting plants and granulate coolers. The motivation has always been to develop an even better product for our customers. For this reason the company cooperates with research institutes and universities. Click on the image to visit the Amandus Kahl website.

Friday, July 19, 2013

International Aquafeed July/August 2013 online now

I am delighted to announce that the new issue of International Aquafeed is at the printer and online now.

One of my highlights of this issue was interviewing Chris Ninnes, CEO, Aquaculture Stewardship Council. I asked Chris about the need for certification scheme and the role feed manufacturers can play in responsive aquaculture.

This issue really puts the 'international' in International Aquafeed. On the technology front, the team at Waterco, Australia writes about different types of filtration. While Mian Riaz of Texas A&M, USA writes on maintaining mineral quality in extruded feeds.

Elsewhere, we have an article on chelated minerals by Alvaro Rodriguez, Liptosa, Spain and two articles on probiotics by FF Khalil, Ahmed Ismail Mehrim and Montaha E M Hassan, Al-Mansoura University, Egypt and Dr Nguyen Nhu Tri and Prof Le Thanh Hung, Nong Lam University, Vietnam.

Our Expert Topic this issue is channel catfish. Commercial farming of this freshwater species is dominated by the USA and China. In a fascinating look back through the history books, Jim Steeby Mississippi Sate University, USA explores the origins of the commercial channel catfish industry in the USA.

I hope you enjoy reading this magazine as much as we did preparing it. I would love to hear any comments of feedback so get in touch at

Click here to read the full issue.

Video: Seahorse aquaculture

I have been researching seahorses for an article for International Aquafeed. This film showcases the seahorse facilities at the University of Maine, USA.

The resident scientists explain the prevalence of disease in these fascinating creatures and what's being done to tackle it.

19/07/13: WorldFish launches sustainable aquaculture programme; catfish fry thrive on zooplankton; Chilean salmon farm gets BAP status

WorldFish Incubator is a new programme by WorldFish Center into making sustainable aquaculture possible.

The innovative programme is designed to support investment into sustainable small and medium-sized aquaculture enterprises in developing countries. It identifies suitable projects and facilitates technical and financial assistance, offering nurturing in sustainable aquaculture through its network of contacts. 

By leveraging the benefits of scale, WorldFish Incubator will help the aquaculture sector deliver on its promise to meet the growing demand for fish whilst ensuring equitable supplies and access for the poor.

Catfish fry can thrive by feeding on naturally occurring zooplankton according to research at Mississippi State University, USA. 

Scientists at MSU’s Thad Cochran National Warmwater Aquaculture Center compared the growth and survival of two groups of recently hatched catfish.

“Postponing the use of specially prepared commercial fry feed for six weeks showed fry are relying on naturally occurring microscopic food organisms, such as zooplankton,” said Charles Mischke, aquaculture research professor at MSU’s Delta Research and Extension Center in Stoneville told the Mississippi Business Journal.

Nova Austral, Chile has achieved the Global Aquaculture Alliance (GAA) Best Aquaculture Practices (BAP) certification.

Nova Austral’s salmon processing plant located in Porvenir, Chile (in Region XII) earned BAP certification on June 27, 2013. 

Nova Austral is one of Chile's largest salmon producers, processing more than 20,000 metric tons of Atlantic salmon annually.
Regions of Chile by their roman numeral.
Regions of Chile by their roman numeral. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

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