Sunday, December 3, 2017

04/12/2017: Prospects for land-based fish farming - fish international with aquaculture workshop SCOPE

Aquaculture has been a key focus at fish international for some years

Once again, from Sunday 25 to Tuesday 27 February 2018, Germany's only fish trade fair devotes a lot of attention to this topic. However, the SCOPE workshop is a new departure.

"For the first time, we're offering a complete module so that we can work intensively on four specially selected topics", says Project Manager Sabine Wedell. "We believe this is a better way of catering to the participants' interests."
 


One of the greatest challenges of aquaculture is achieving ever more effective and sustainable production. The four modules on the Monday tackle best-practice examples of farming in recirculating systems, salmonid farming, shrimp farming in Europe and animal welfare.

On the Tuesday, the participants will get to know interesting exhibitors and experience a variety of aquaculture products in our Smoke House, where the delicacies will be explained and exclusively prepared for them.

Ohad Maiman, CEO of Kingfish Zeeland, will talk about stand-out systems. The Dutch company has been producing yellowtail amberjacks (Seriola lalandi) as high-end products since last year. He sees great potential for the product on the European market.

According to Mr. Maiman, gourmets value the excellent sashimi quality of the tropical predatory fish with its firm, oily flesh. A further advantage for the company is the freshness that results from the comparatively short transport distances in Europe compared to imports from Asia or Australia. Currently, the company is convincing above all top chefs of the qualities of its product. fishinternational will boost awareness of the fish in Germany and open up new sales channels.

German aquaculture currently focuses mainly on salmonids. Production is mostly in the hands of small and very small companies. However, a few large companies, mainly in Baden-Württemberg, are highly profitable and demonstrate that it is possible to succeed in international competition. Despite this, the sector is stagnating. Two producers, Stephan Hofer of Hofer-Forellen in Baden-Württemberg and trout farmer Marcin Juchniewicz of Fishfarm K2, one of Poland's most innovative fish farms, will lead a discussion on how to improve production efficiency.

A comparatively new topic in Germany and Europe is shrimp farming, which has been noteworthy above all for a string of business failures. Förde Garnelen in Kiel has so far been one of only a few successful ventures. Up to now, the company has only been producing in a pilot project. "We plan to increase production next year from five to 50 tons", says Managing Director Dr. Bert Wecker. He will be one of the contributors to the Shrimp Workshop. There is a vast market for shrimps in Germany, which imports 40,000 tons per year. Mr. Wecker sees good sales opportunities in the luxury segment for high-priced goods made in Germany. So why do many companies fail in this sector? He names possible reasons as: "poor technology, inexpert management and systems that are too small to produce economically". A great many skills are required, leading to an in-built possibility of failure. Today, farmers are advised not to invest in shrimp farming. Even apart from the problems already mentioned, the animals are sensitive – they need a lot of space to thrive.

That does not apply to many other types of farmed fish. Aquaculture usually cultivates juvenile fish, which have a natural swarm behaviour. That is why the fish density in farming is not the most important parameter for animal welfare. The basic requirements for animal-friendly fish farming are above all other environmental conditions such as water quality. These are among the findings of research by a team under Dr Helmut Wedekind of the Fisheries Institute of the Bavarian State Research Centre for Agriculture. In a study, they measured the release of the stress hormone cortisol in rainbow trout in relation to factors including stock density. Just recently, Dr Wedekind and his team conducted trials with a new method of slaughtering catfish which avoids stressful catching of individual fish out of a group. Instead, the fish swim independently into the slaughtering system.

All the details of the workshop are available on the trade fair website, HERE.

The Aquaculturists
This blog is maintained by The Aquaculturists staff and is supported by the
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