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REVISTA: AQUA Acuicultura + Pesca - Marzo 2015


La principal área de producción de salmónidos del país sigue enfrentando los mismos desafíos de antaño para su crecimiento.

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EUROPEAN UNION: TACS and Quotas 2015

EUROPEAN UNION: TACS and Quotas 2015 | Aquaculture and Fisheries - World Briefing |

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RESEARCH ARTICLE: An Industry-Scale Mass Marking Technique for Tracing Farmed Fish Escapees

RESEARCH ARTICLE: An Industry-Scale Mass Marking Technique for Tracing Farmed Fish Escapees | Aquaculture and Fisheries - World Briefing |


Farmed fish escape and enter the environment with subsequent effects on wild populations. Reducing escapes requires the ability to trace individuals back to the point of escape, so that escape causes can be identified and technical standards improved. Here, we tested if stable isotope otolith fingerprint marks delivered during routine vaccination could be an accurate, feasible and cost effective marking method, suitable for industrial-scale application. We tested seven stable isotopes, 134Ba, 135Ba, 136Ba, 137Ba, 86Sr, 87Sr and 26Mg, on farmed Atlantic salmon reared in freshwater, in experimental conditions designed to reflect commercial practice. Marking was 100% successful with individual Ba isotopes at concentrations as low as 0.001 µg. g-1 fish and for Sr isotopes at 1 µg. g-1 fish. Our results suggest that 63 unique fingerprint marks can be made at low cost using Ba (0.0002 – 0.02 $US per mark) and Sr (0.46 – 0.82 $US per mark) isotopes. Stable isotope fingerprinting during vaccination is feasible for commercial application if applied at a company level within the world’s largest salmon producing nations. Introducing a mass marking scheme would enable tracing of escapees back to point of origin, which could drive greater compliance, better farm design and improved management practices to reduce escapes.


About the Authors


Fletcher Warren-Myers, Tim Dempster, Stephen E. Swearer - School of BioSciences, University of Melbourne, Parkville, Victoria, Australia


Per Gunnar Fjelldal, Tom Hansen - Institute of Marine Research, Matre Aquaculture Research Station, Matredal, Norway


Corresponding Author




Competing Interests


The authors have declared that no competing interests exist.


Author Contributions


Conceived and designed the experiments: FW TD PF TH SS. Performed the experiments: FW PF TH. Analyzed the data: FW TD SS. Contributed reagents/materials/analysis tools: FW TD PF TH SS. Wrote the paper: FW TD PF TH SS.


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WORLDWIDE: Future Prospects for Fisheries and Aquaculture and their contribution to preserving food security

WORLDWIDE: Future Prospects for Fisheries and Aquaculture and their contribution to preserving food security | Aquaculture and Fisheries - World Briefing |

Assistant Director-General, Fisheries and Aquaculture Department, Árni M. Mathiesen presents an outlook for global fisheries and aquaculture and their contribution to preserving food security.




The presentation was delivered during the IV Conference of Fisheries and Aquaculture in Lima, Peru, 24 February 2015.

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WORLDWIDE: Pangasius - March 2015

WORLDWIDE: Pangasius - March 2015 | Aquaculture and Fisheries - World Briefing |
 Pangasius production in Viet Nam steady but rising in other producing countries on domestic demand.


During the period January to September 2014 approximately 340 000 tonnes of frozen pangasius fillet entered markets in more than 70 countries, a marginal decline from the same period in 2013. However, imports increased into selected markets in the European Union, Latin America and Asia. The world’s largest producer, Viet Nam, reported a steady production in 2014 at 1.1 to 1.2 million tonnes. Production continues to rise in other producing countries where a substantial amount enters the domestic markets.


Viet Nam

Production of pangasius in 2015 is forecast to remain stable at 1.1 – 1.2 million tonnes, according to the Directorate of Fisheries under Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development. The Ministry also forecasts that exports of pangasius in 2015 will reach USD 1.75 - 1.85 billion. In the first 11 months of 2014, pangasius exports were valued at USD 1.6 billion up 0.6% from the same period in 2013, the Vietnam Association of Seafood Exporters and Producers (VASEP) report.  Exports declined to most markets, in particular the EU and the USA, while there were higher exports to Asia, Latin America and Saudi Arabia.


Vietnamese authorities have passed a decree making it compulsory for commercial fish farms to apply for the VietGAP Standard or another international standard certification by 31 December 2015. VASEP forecasts that 30% of aquaculture installations will be VietGAP certified 2015 and will reach 80% by 2020. The Vietnamese government considers this certification crucial to minimize the negative impacts of aquaculture, to develop sustainable farming, enhance product value and promote exports.


In compliance with Vietnamese Law commercial fish farms must be located in planning areas approved by the People’s Committee in each locality and the extent of fish farms and their output must be registered with local managing agencies. The new decree also includes detailed regulations on quality and food safety of processed Vietnamese catfish products and stipulates that raw pangasius for processing must be grown on farms that adhere to the regulations.


In addition, processed pangasius must comply with regulations on seafood quality and food safety set by Viet Nam and other importing markets. In the case of frozen processed pangasius fillets, the chemicals and additives that are allowed are listed by Vietnamese law and other importing countries and processors are urged to use only those that are permitted. Fingerlings, feed, veterinary drugs, biological products, micro-organisms and chemical products are also specified under Vietnamese law and producers and processors must use those that are approved.

In a related development, the regulations on ice and moisture content in tra fish (pangasius) fillets for export that were to have taken effect in January 2015 has been delayed to early 2016 by the government. Previously, some pangasius exporters in An Giang Province filed a petition asking the government to delay the effective date of the decree by a year. Although exporters acknowledge that the new rule is intended to increase the quality, they argue that a pilot scheme to measure the market reaction should have been implemented first.



Total catfish imports during the third quarter of 2014 declined by 7.6% in volume from 2013 according to data from the National Marine Fisheries Service (NMFS). Frozen pangasius fillet imports, which make up 94% of total catfish declined by 8.7%, are the primary reason for the overall decline. Imports of frozen Ictalurus fillet, however, were higher by 5.5% during the period under review. Pangasius frozen fillet supplies fell by 8.7% from the leading supplier Viet Nam but were higher from Bangladesh and China, although the table below does not show these imports. China was the sole supplier of frozen Ictalurus fillets.



Demand for pangasius in the EU-28 continued to slow during the third quarter of 2014 with a close to 6% decline in imports from the largest supplier, Viet Nam. A total of 98 538 tonnes of frozen pangasius fillet was imported during this period. The largest markets are Spain, the Netherlands, Germany and Italy. Imports by Spain and Italy increased by 5% and 0.5% respectively while imports declined in most other EU countries indicating demand is waning. Of note are the increased imports from Bangladesh during this period. According to Eurostat, a total of 2 421 tonnes of whole frozen pangasius was imported into the EU-28 with nearly 50% from Viet Nam, followed by Indonesia, Thailand and Bangladesh.  



Demand for frozen pangasius fillet strengthened during the third quarter of 2014. Both the household and catering sectors are consumers of this product. Approximately 50 000 tonnes of frozen pangasius fillets were imported based on estimates from national statistics. This translates into an approximately 60% increase from the January – June period this year. Thailand, China, Taiwan Province of China, India, Japan and the Republic of Korea imported between 1.35% and 448% more than in the same period in 2013.


No imports were recorded by Indonesia because of stringent government import regulations to ensure the quality of imported fish as well as to encourage consumption of local fish. This is also due to the boom in local pangasius farming with strong support from the government and growing demand in the local market. According to the Indonesian Catfish Entrepreneurs Association (APCI), the country’s pangasius industry has successfully substituted imported Vietnamese product, which used to dominate the local fillet market. The local industry now takes around a 70% share of the local fillet market, supplying around 700 tonnes per month to retailers. Local pangasius production is estimated to be around 500 000-600 000 tonnes annually, which the government hope will increase to reach 1.1 million tonnes in 2023.


Latin America

The largest importers of pangasius fillet in this region during January – September 2014 were Mexico, Brazil and Colombia accounting for 95% of the nearly 83 000 tonnes imported. Imports increased by 4.9%, 87% and 27% respectively by these countries from a year ago.


However, in a recent development,the Brazilian government temporary suspended Viet Nam pangasius import licenses for sanitary reasons and lack of phyto-sanitary controls.



Overall demand is expected to remain firm with significant imports taking in most markets globally.


The slightly weak USA market may pick up as Lent approaches while in Asia demand for locally produced pangasius is likely to strengthen with the upcoming Chinese Lunar New Year.
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WORLDWIDE: Shrimp - March 2015

WORLDWIDE: Shrimp - March 2015 | Aquaculture and Fisheries - World Briefing |


Top ten import markets buy nearly 1.3 million tonnes of shrimp in first three quarters of 2014.


Shrimp imports to the top ten markets were 8% more compared with the corresponding period a year ago. Shrimp prices in general were firm during the third quarter of 2014, but remained below the extremely high rates recorded in 2013. Export prices, however, weakened during the October-December 2014 period, when the large traditional markets carried out year-end purchases. The trend persisted into January this year. 



The peak farming season in the Asian producing countries ended by early November and supplies have slowed down since then. However, unlike 2013, prices declined by 10-15% during November and December compared with September as a result of poor demand from the United States of America, the European Union and Japan. Direct imports into China were also lower from India and Ecuador among others, while indirect imports into China are taking place through Viet Nam. The Chinese New Year celebration in mid-February will keep demand strong in the oriental markets in Asia.


Meanwhile, the reports on production in 2014 are available for some countries. Supply in the largest producing country, China, is likely to be lower than in 2013; aquaculture production of vannamei shrimp in the four southern provinces was affected by typhoons during the main farming season and the domestic price remained firm during the second half of 2014 with rising imports.


In Thailand, shrimp aquaculture is yet to recover from early mortality syndrome (EMS) and production is likely to decline by 25% in 2014 compared with 2013. Preliminary estimates suggest 180 000 to 200 000 tonnes of production in 2014.


Production increased moderately in India by 14 or 15% compared with 2013. The unofficial data indicated 300 000 tonnes of vannamei and 20 000 tonnes of black tiger shrimp production in 2014, compared with the volumes of 250 000 tonnes and 30 000 tonnes respectively a year ago. Increased exports to most of the markets also confirm this trend.


The annual data for Viet Nam is not available yet but production of vannamei is likely to be higher than in 2013 according to the Vietnam Association of Seafood Exporters and Producers (VASEP).


Ecuador possibly had the highest growth rate at between 15 and 25% depending on the full year estimates; the National Chamber of Aquaculture indicated about 245 000 tonnes of production in 2014 compared with 214 000 tonnes in 2013. Farmed shrimp production in Nicaragua was also reached 28 500 tonnes, which is 23% more than 2013.


Import and export trends

The top ten shrimp importing markets in order of ranking were the EU, the USA, Japan, Viet Nam, the Republic of Korea, China, Hong Kong SAR, Mexico, Canada and Australia. These markets bought 1.3 million tonnes of shrimp during the first nine months of 2014, which is 8% or 100 000 tonnes more than in the same period a year ago. However, there were negative trends in Japan (-19%), Hong Kong SAR (-10%) and Canada (-5%).


In export trade, India, Ecuador, China, Indonesia, Viet Nam and Thailand were the top suppliers. Shrimp exports from India increased by 47% in quantity and 71% in value during the reporting period, whereas the growth rates for Ecuador were 35% in quantity and 57% in value. Exports from China and Thailand declined by 15% and 31% respectively.



Domestic sales of shrimp were good during the year-end festive season and the product groups in demand were the high value sea-caught tropical shrimp and processed shrimp such as raw nobashi and tempura shrimp. Sales of headless shell-on farmed vannamei were at a record low while promotional campaigns during December 2013 were mainly for the cheaper Atlantic seabob shrimp.


Despite lower imports, wholesale prices of raw shell-on vannamei were 20% lower in December 2014 compared with the same month a year ago. Even then, there was very little improvement in demand from supermarkets and other intermediary users.


The yen depreciation has made the import business extremely difficult in Japan throughout the year. Landing costs for imported seafood increased and domestic prices also went up, causing resistance from end consumers. Marketers are very much concerned about further rises in local prices, as these will not be acceptable by the retail or catering trade.

During the January-September 2014 period, total shrimp imports, raw and prepared, were nearly 35 000 tonnes lower than in the same period in 2013. With the exception of frozen ebi (largely supplied by New Zealand), imports fell for every product group. The top three suppliers in the market were Viet Nam (34 477 tonnes), Thailand (25 857 tonnes) and Indonesia (21 929 tonnes). Demand for coldwater shrimp was better and supplies increased from Argentina and Russia.


With these trends, total imports of shrimp in 2014 could reach about half of the 320,000 tonnes imported in 1994.



Despite some price weakening import demand from US buyers remained quite low. Supplies seem to exceed demand, while wholesale prices remained steady at levels that are still quite high compared with historical patterns. Imports in 2014 were much higher than a year ago and the domestic distribution chain is holding large inventories bought at high prices.


On the macroeconomic level, conditions are favourable. The USA economy overall is growing, with GDP increasing 3.5% in the third quarter of 2014. On a microeconomic level, favourable signs can also be seen. Gasoline prices have been declining, which gives consumers more disposable income and spending at all levels seems to be strong. Compared with the previous year, consumer demand in the retail and catering sectors was better during the Christmas and New Year season, benefiting supermarkets and restaurants.

The market imported a significantly large quantity of shrimp during the first nine months of 2014. Cumulative imports till September 2014 were by 44 000 tonnes or 12% more than the same period last year; the import value was 38% higher reaching USD 4.8 billion.


India, again, was the leading supplier with an 18.6% share in the total supply of imported shrimp. About 46% of shrimp imported from Indian were peeled products, which are 5 148 tonnes more from the same period last year. Ecuador also supplied more peeled shrimp (+4 813 tonnes) and so did Indonesia (+9 811 tonnes).


Imports were higher for larger sized shrimp as well while the cheaper small to medium sizes did not show significant increases during the period under review, indicating growing demand for larger and more expensive shrimp. Breaded shrimp imports also increased by 12%; supplies increased from China and Ecuador.


Meanwhile, the US Food and Drug Administration (US FDA) intensified its inspection of imported shrimp. Reportedly, the FDA rejected 35 containers of shrimp in October 2014, because of the detection of higher than acceptable levels of antibiotic residue in farmed shrimp imported from Viet Nam, Malaysia, India and China.



There has been little improvement in consumer demand throughout 2014 and shrimp imports into the EU increased only marginally (+4.3%) during the January-September 2014 time period compared with 2013.


Spain and Italy in particular increased imports by 3.7% and 10.5% respectively; but imports declined in France, Denmark and the UK.


With enhanced production of farmed shrimp, Ecuador, India, Viet Nam and Indonesia were able to export more, compared with 2013. Imports from India, however, slowed down during the last quarter of the year following several rejections of farmed shrimp by the EU Food and Veterinary Office because of the presence of unauthorized antibiotics in some shipments.


Despite the overall weakening in price during the last quarter of the year, lack of import demand made for slow Christmas sales.


For the wild caught shrimp, catches of Argentina red shrimp reached a record high in 2014, but prices remain firm because of increasing demand from East Asian markets.


In the Spanish market imports increased substantially from Latin America and also from India (+7%), Viet Nam (61%) and Iran (+30%), which were farmed white shrimp.


The rise in Italian imports can also be attributed to increased supplies from South America as well as from India and Viet Nam and some intra-EU imports.


Belgium was India’s largest market in the EU. Imports also increased from Bangladesh and Viet Nam into Belgium during the reporting period.

The import growth in Germany was marginal during the reporting period.


Asia and other markets

Shrimp demand was relatively strong in the non-traditional markets. China imported nearly 20% more shrimp during the first nine months of 2014, compared with the same period in 2013 and so did Republic of Korea (+6.6%), Malaysia (+7%), Mexico (+30%). In these markets shrimp imports generally entered the domestic trade. Industry sources indicated that the actual imports in China, particularly from Viet Nam and Myanmar are much higher than the official figures, resulting from unrecorded border trade.


Viet Nam also replaced China as the primary shrimp supplier to the market in the Republic of Korea.


Viet Nam, on the contrary, remained a strong importer of shrimp for reprocessing and re-exports. Compared with 2013, frozen shrimp imports into Viet Nam increased by 131% from Ecuador and by 166% from India during the period from January to September 2014 with a combined total of about 90 000 tonnes .


Direct imports of shrimp from India to China were lower than the previous year but indirect imports increased through Viet Nam, particularly for the shipments taking place through Hiphong port in northern Viet Nam. Indian shrimp exports to Viet Nam were also recorded higher at nearly 79 000 tonnes during the January-September 2014 period.


Latin America

Mexico is now importing more frozen shrimp than it exports as a result of EMS disease; imports increased by 30% from January to September 2014 against the same period in 2013 when a 48% decrease in production from 100 000 tonnes in 2012 to 52 000 tonnes in 2013 was reported. From Latin America, exports increased from Ecuador, Honduras, Guatemala, Nicaragua and Belize to Mexico; imports also took place from India, Iran, Viet Nam and Indonesia.


In Honduras, from January to October 2014 shrimp exports reached 11 236 tonnes, with a total value of USD 191.7 million. The volume predicted for the whole year is 14 436 tonnes, reaching USD 230 million in value, which would mean a 6% increase compared with 2013.


Mexico is the major importer of shrimp from Honduras (34%), followed by Europe (32%) and the USA (22%).


According to Ricardo Gomez, Executive Director of the National Aquaculture Association of Honduras (ANDAH), the quality of the shrimp produced in the country has made access to new markets like China, Hong Kong and Thailand possible. This is the reason why producers have planned an increase in production to meet the first shipments to be made in 2015.


The accompanying graph shows that from December 2012 to December 2014 prices of all sizes of shrimp fluctuated because of EMS disease. Buyers feared shortages in supply, which resulted in an increase in demand, causing prices to rise. Later, prices fell as a result of an increase in production in Latin America and because buyers had already filled their inventories and stopped buying.


Between January and October 2014 Nicaraguan shrimp exports to France totaled more than USD 18 million in value, a 92% increase compared with the same period in 2013, when total exports reached USD 9.5 million, according to a report in la



Farmed shrimp production is seasonally low in Asia from November until March and generally prices remain firm during this period. However, since October, shrimp prices on the global market have not improved much and the prices are showing signs of softening further because demand is poor, particularly from the USA, which is holding large stocks. However, raw material supply is low as it is the off season. Hence trade direction remains uncertain in the short term.


Industry sources indicate that supplies of large sized shrimp, in particular, will be low during the first quarter of 2015.


In the USA market procurement for Lent in March and April will depend on the available stocks in the market, which will again set the price trend until the next season begins in April. The market will also monitor the supply and demand pattern in East Asia during the Lunar New Year celebrations in February.

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Gabriole Van Bryce's curator insight, March 18, 3:28 PM

If you eat shrimp, I suggest you read this.

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WORLDWIDE: European Seabass and Gilthead Seabream - March 2015

WORLDWIDE: European Seabass and Gilthead Seabream - March 2015 | Aquaculture and Fisheries - World Briefing |

Turkish expansion strategy set to pay off as sea bass and seabream production growth throttled back.


The Turkish seabass and seabream industry has been steadily increasing production volumes for the last decade or so, to the point where Turkey is now the world’s major  producer of seabass and also closing the gap on the Greek seabream sector. At the beginning of 2015, it now appears that the production growth stage of the Turkish expansion is winding down and the focus is instead switching to turning production into profit.


A number of factors have contributed to the Turkish success. For one thing, Turkey’s major competitor, the Greek industry, has been struggling to maintain profitability for some years now, while the economic crisis has severely restricted  access to credit. Meanwhile, the Turkish sector has received substantial investment and government support, on top of its existing advantage in terms of production costs. This has allowed Turkish exporters to price their product well below their Greek counterparts in many cases, leading to a steady influx of Turkish fish into established and emerging markets alike. More recently, the Russian ban on imports of seafood products from a range of Western nations, including Greece, has played into Turkish hands. Although, prior to the ban, Turkey was already the major supplier to the Russian market, the difficulty that Russian imports are facing obtaining other species, such as salmon, appears to have boosted demand for Turkish bass and bream substantially.


The fourth quarter of 2014 continued to be a stable period for Turkish seabass and seabream producers. Average prices (domestic and export) for both species were stable during last quarter of the year. The end of year festivities  period in Europe boosted the exports in the latter part of December. Seabream sales were strong for 300-400 and 400-600 g fish during December and 2013 generation seabream stocks were cleared out by most producers.


According to industry experts one of the main challenges remaining for Turkish seabass and seabream producers in 2015 are bio-technical problems associated with decline in quality of fish feeds. As the global prices for fishmeal and oil increase, feed producers tend to use lower priced alternatives (e.g. soya meal and oil), which have a negative impact on quality of fish feed in terms of  feed conversion ratios (FCR) and fish growth rates. Poorer FCRs and growth rates are expected to increase rearing periods and production costs. Lower fish growth rates and longer grow out periods may create some bottlenecks for supply of 300-400 and 400-600 g fish, which are most in demand by international markets. At the same time this situation can create an advantage for producers with shorter grow out periods.


In Greece, meanwhile, companies continue to focus on debt servicing strategies and corporate restructuring in an attempt to return to profitability. Progress is being made, however, and this year there have been a number of reports of reduced losses. Medium-szied companies remain mostly profitable however. Though there are multiple underlying factors, higher international prices for gilt-head seabream, the primary export species, have eased pressure on margins. Although Greece has exported less fish overall in 2014, compared with last year, the higher price level has more than compensated, at least in the case of bream. For bass, the situation is somewhat less positive, as the average export price this year for fresh whole fish is lower than 2013, and volumes are approximately flat as of September. This is no doubt related to the greater penetration of cheaper Turkish seabass into traditionally Greek markets than there has been in the case of seabream.



Greek producers will have been somewhat relieved by the resilience of the Italian market in 2014, which has traditionally been the most important destination for Greek bass and bream. Italian figures show approximately the same quantity of fish imported from Greece this year, at marginally higher prices, particularly for seabream. This is despite the relatively slower recovery of the Italian economy compared with the rest of the Eurozone, although the slight reduction in domestic production in 2014 should also be taken into account. Also, Italian buyers are apparently not immune to the allure of cheaper Turkish fish, and the Turkish share of supply for both bass and bream continues to increase year by year. In this sense, many retailers use three product categories for the farmed fish; the large volume and low priced Turkish origin, Greek product as standard, and Italian product, which is somewhat larger sized as the top product. In addition is the wild product, which is priced at twice the top domestic price level.



Spain is another market that is increasingly supplied by Turkey, mainly at the expense of their Greek competitors. In 2014, Turkish fish accounted for just more than 29% of the total fresh seabass and seabream imported into Spain from January to September. In 2012, this proportion was only 18%. In the same timeframe, the Greek share has dropped from 73% to around 54%, while a substantial increase in imports from France was also noticeable in 2014. In general, demand appears to be improving on the Spanish market.



French retailers are focusing on promoting domestically-produced bass and bream this year and demand for imported farmed fish appears to be weakening. However, it should be kept in mind that a significant part of the French bass and bream market, particularly for bream,is supplied by capture fisheries, for which up-to-date price and production data is much more difficult to obtain, although price levels in general are quite high.  France also exports wild bass to Italy.


Other markets

Imports of Greek fish into the UK, particularly of seabream, have fallen drastically in 2014, while Turkish-origin imports have more than doubled. Demand appears to be firm on the German market, although here also we may observe a steady shift in importer preference toward cheaper Turkish fish. A similar trend is evident on the US market, where imports of Turkish more than doubled in 2014.



Juvenile production data for the major bass and bream producers suggest that production growth, for at least the next two years, will be approximately flat for seabream and likely to be negative for seabass. This is in large part due to the reversal of the Turkish industry’s previously rapid growth. The future effect on the market is difficult to predict precisely, but strong growth in many emerging markets and evidence of slow recovery in many established ones suggests that demand is now outstripping supply. This in turn should see prices rise, which will bring some relief to cash-strapped Greek producers. It is the Turkish industry, however, that is set to reap the greatest benefits if sustained high price levels are indeed the result of tightening supply. Turkish fish is now present in large quantities in almost all the major markets, and Turkey is the dominant supplier to many important emerging markets including Russia, where the import ban will continue to represent a lucrative opportunity for Turkish exporters for as long as it lasts. In the short term, the usual cyclical pattern should see prices for both bass and bream trend upwards in early 2015.

Despite the more positive outlook, many challenges remain for the bass and bream sector. At a workshop that took place as part of Aquaculture Europe 2014 in October, a wide range of different stakeholders within the industry came together to try and identify the key issues that need to be addressed. Although a diverse selection of different topics were discussed, the following were emphasized by the participants as future areas of focus for the industry as a whole:


1) The need for increased investment in research and development activities to improve, among other things, techniques for breeding and genetic selection, nutrition and disease management;


2) The need for increased collaboration and collective marketing strategies, including product diversification, to increase the export market penetration of the species and reduce dependency on domestic market sales;


3) The need for improved data collection and dissemination;


4) The need for better environmental management regulations and practices.


The general feeling amongst the participants at the workshop was that, although the sector has struggled with profitability for some time now, and has thus been distracted from addressing these issues by the need to ensure its basic survival, it is now time to take proactive steps towards laying a more stable foundation to support and encourage the sustained growth of the industry in the future.

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EUROPEAN UNION: Assessing ecosystem services in coastal and marine waters

EUROPEAN UNION: Assessing ecosystem services in coastal and marine waters | Aquaculture and Fisheries - World Briefing |

A JRC-organised session on coastal and marine ecosystem services generated a lot of interest and positive feedback from the participants at last month’s annual Association of the Sciences of Limnology & Oceanography (ASLO) 2015 meeting in Granada, Spain.


This year’s ASLO meeting, the theme of which was “Aquatic Sciences: Global And Regional Perspectives — North Meets South”, was attended by more than 5 000 scientists from all over the world.


There was standing room only at the JRC-organised session, entitled “Bridging the gap between ecosystem modelling and ecosystem services’ assessment in coastal and marine waters”. The JRC chaired the session and made two of the six presentations, which were complemented by sessions from French, Spanish and US research organisations. The session was very well received and generated lively discussions among the attendees.


The oceans and the coastal zones are considered to be the largest contributors to the total economic value of the biosphere through ecosystem services such as the provision of fish, water purification, carbon sequestration and recreation. However, the modelling and quantification of these services is relatively limited compared to terrestrial assessments. Ecosystem modelling assesses the structure and functioning of marine and coastal ecosystems, and is therefore a very suitable tool for assessing the related ecosystem services.


It is hoped that the improved assessment of coastal and marine ecosystem services will help raise awareness about the inherent value of the biosphere, and put a halt to the further degradation/destruction of this natural capital.



Further information

2015 Aquatic Sciences Meeting:


JRC Session schedule: Bridging the gap between ecosystem modelling and ecosystem services’ assessment in coastal and marine waters



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EVENT: 9 June 2015, Cologne, Germany - 8th AQUAFEED HORIZONS 2015

EVENT: 9 June 2015, Cologne, Germany - 8th AQUAFEED HORIZONS 2015 | Aquaculture and Fisheries - World Briefing |

Aquafeed Horizons - the Conference


 About the conference


Did you know

More tons of seafood are farmed than beef?

More seafood is farmed than caught?

Aquafeed production grew by 17% last year?

Aquaculture shows a consistent 11% growth?

Can you afford to be left behind?

The continuing growth of aquaculture is no secret, but the technical and scientific know-how is far from simple. Consider the physical and nutritional demands of feed for differing aquatic environments, feeding habits, and sizes  of the hugely diverse range of aquatic species farmed today  and the complexity of producing aquafeeds becomes clear. 

On top of this, the industry is seeking sustainable protein alternatives, cheaper carb sources and new functional ingredients, so we see algal products, co-products from biofuel production and other novel ingredients becoming available. They hold the promise of helping the aquafeed manufacturer be environmentally responsibility, and achieve production efficiency and profitability – but do we know their processing implications?

Brought to you by the industry’s  knowledge communicator,, the 8th Aquafeed Horizons Conference will arm delegates with the latest processing information to meet head on the challenges facing this sector.


Registration Details:


Presentation Outlines and Speakers Biographies:




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MAGAZINE: Hook Up - Issue 1 - 2015

Hook Up is the official digital magazine of the New Zealand Sports Fishing Council. Find out more at
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EUROPEAN UNION: EFCA’s annual report focuses on preparing for the landing obligation

EUROPEAN UNION: EFCA’s annual report focuses on preparing for the landing obligation | Aquaculture and Fisheries - World Briefing |

In its annual report of 2014 activities, the European Fisheries Control Agency outlines how it assisted Member States and the European Commission to prepare for the monitoring of the landing obligation. This included rolling out new data network systems, adding modules for training fisheries’ inspectors and finding synergies with Member states for joint monitoring efforts.


Overall, EFCA’s inspections rose by a significant 20% compared to the previous year, reaching approximately 12.600 inspections in 2014. The Agency also played an active role at an international level. It provided capacity building operations in non-EU countries in support of sustainable fisheries partnerships agreements, it contributed to the evaluation of non-EU governments to fight IUU activities and assisted EU delegations in the Regional Fisheries Management Organisations. During 2014, the EFCA trained 850 fisheries inspectors.


In a recent seminar on the landing obligation, the Agency committed to continue its cooperation with Member states to facilitate compliance and a level playing field. It is ready to extend its cooperation where this is required.


More information

EFCA Administrative Board adopts its annual report for 2014
and endorses the results of the seminar on the Landing Obligation

During its meeting of 5 March 2015, the EFCA Administrative Board adopted the annual report for 2014, which comprised all the activities undertaken by the EFCA during the last year. The EFCA staff assisted the Member states and the European Commission in the preparation of the monitoring of the landing obligation including the rolling out of new data network systems as required by the Control Council Regulation, the making of additional modules of the Core Curricula for the training of fisheries inspectors and the synergies developed within the Member States regional fora for joint efforts for the monitoring of the then future landing obligation. In addition, as the landing obligation includes some species not covered by a specific control and inspection programme, the EFCA Administrative Board approved an expanded cooperation approach with the Member Stated coined as PACT for Partnership, Accountability (compliance), Cooperation and Transparency.

The coordination of the ongoing five Joint Deployment Plans reached a significant intensity with an increase of 20% of the inspections in the different areas compared to the previous year, which have led to around 12600 inspections. Five Joint Deployment Plans have been implemented and the development of a year-round activity continued, covering a wider range of species with permanent exchange of information and intelligence.


"The EFCA contributed to assist the smooth implement of the new features of the reformed Common Fisheries Policy (CFP) and particularly worked hard with the Member States to prepare the monitoring of the landing obligation by brokering cooperation, promoting interoperability and building common capacities," said Pascal Savouret, Executive Director.







Days of activity





Total inspections





Total infringements





Ratio of infringements per inspection








The Administrative Board endorsed the results of the seminar on the monitoring of the landing obligation which took place yesterday. The seminar endorsed that the EFCA will continue cooperating with the Member States regional fora on request to facilitate compliance, harmonisation and a level playing field, to strengthen and extend the cooperation to more species when appropriate and to facilitate inter-regional cooperation.







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EGYPT: Delivering Unwelcome Species to the Mediterranean

EGYPT: Delivering Unwelcome Species to the Mediterranean | Aquaculture and Fisheries - World Briefing |

Egypt’s plan to expand the Suez Canal threatens the sea’s fragile biodiversity.


The Mediterranean Sea is among the world’s great environmental jewels. The sea is highly saline, almost entirely enclosed by land and contains immense biodiversity. Scientists have long worried that its health is imperiled. Swelling coastal populations and ship traffic have brought overfishing and pollution. Climate change threatens to roil the waters still further.


One threat that is now gaining particular attention: the arrival of invasive species. One of the Mediterranean’s few outlets is the 146-year-old Suez Canal, which links it to the Red Sea and the ocean beyond. This creates a vital shipping route between Europe and Asia. But scientists fear that an expansion of the canal could bring more invasive species to the Mediterranean’s fragile waters.


Last year, Egypt announced plans to quickly build 45 more miles of waterway — a parallel canal, in part — so that ships can pass through more quickly than they do now. With the existing canal, they often must wait because the channel is narrow — about 1,000 feet wide at its slimmest point.


Because of the Suez and its expansion, the Mediterranean Sea’s problem with invasive species is becoming “worse than anywhere else on earth,” said Bella Galil, a senior scientist with Israel’s National Institute of Oceanography.


Among the unpopular arrivals are venomous jellyfish, which have unnerved tourists and sometimes obstructed water intakes belonging to electric-power or desalination plants, in addition to harming the natural ecology. Another worrisome invader is the puffer fish, sometimes known as the silver-cheeked toadfish, which releases a neurotoxin that can harm other fish and humans who consume it.


The existing Suez Canal has already served as a conduit. Invasive species are particularly concentrated in the eastern part of the Mediterranean, in the vicinity of the Suez Canal. The canal is already seen as “as one of the most significant pathways of marine invasions globally,” and it has ushered more than 350 nonnative species — including the puffer fish — into the Mediterranean, according to a letter sent in December from Julia Marton-Lefèvre, then director general of the International Union for Conservation of Nature, to Karmenu Vella, the European commissioner in charge of the environment, maritime affairs and fisheries.


Dr. Galil said, “Marine invasions are forever,” because it is impossible to remove an invasive species from the sea after it has arrived. The sea and its complex food web, she added, are “teetering.”


Some invasive species hitch rides in the ballast water of ships, an issue that the International Maritime Organization is trying to address through new rules regarding the treatment of ballast water to remove stowaways. Others cling to ship hulls, but many creatures simply swim through the Suez Canal itself.


“The expansion of the Suez Canal (enlarging, deepening) will make the environment within the canal more stable and thus will be easier to new species to cross it and invade potentially the Mediterranean,” Michel Bariche, an expert on Mediterranean marine issues at the American University of Beirut in Lebanon, said in an email.


Once they arrive, successful invasive species often outcompete natives, he said, because they tend to be more efficient at basic functions like obtaining food or reproducing.


Backers of the canal expansion cite strong economic opportunities. José Herrera, the parliamentary secretary for competitiveness and economic growth for the island nation of Malta, said that he expected the Suez expansion to benefit the Mediterranean region. “Having more traffic per se does not necessarily mean adverse effects,” he said. Malta, which lies along the major shipping lane through the sea between Europe and Asia, has been working to expand as a hub for shipping and logistics.

“Economic growth should always be promoted, but in sustainable ways,” Mr. Herrera said.


Dr. Galil said that the Suez project could learn from a similar expansion that is underway for the Panama Canal, which was built more than a century ago. The Panama Canal, she said, included an environmental impact assessment process that scientists participated in, and measures are in place to help prevent alien species from crossing between the Pacific and the Atlantic oceans.


“From a bio-invasion point of view, the Panama Canal is well run,” she said, noting that locks help prevent water transfers between the two oceans.


A study ( ) last fall in the journal Diversity and Distributions, however, has raised some concerns about increased opportunities for invasive species following the Panama Canal expansion.


But plans for the Suez continue unabated. Egypt is proceeding quickly with the expansion and has said, ambitiously, that it hopes to be done later this year.


The European Union is in touch with the Egyptian government about its plans, and watching closely. The environment, maritime affairs and fisheries arm of the European Commission is aware of the invasive species concerns, and has information suggesting that an environmental impact assessment is being carried out, according to Enrico Brivio, a spokesman.


Solutions to the invasive species problem could include the establishment of a barrier of salty water, in combination with locks, that would discourage some species from swimming through to the Mediterranean.


The invasive species issues come atop other, mounting problems affecting the Mediterranean, such as overfishing and climate change. Because the Mediterranean is enclosed almost entirely by land, climate change especially could be tough on native species.


“It means that species that might change their distribution and move farther north have an upper boundary,” said Catherine Longo, a project scientist with the Marine Science Institute at the University of California, Santa Barbara.


Correction: March 4, 2015
An earlier version of this article misstated the nature of Egypt’s plans to build a new waterway. The plans are for 45 additional miles of waterway, not a waterway 45 miles long. By KATE GALBRAITH -  PHOTO: Marcial Guillen/European Pressphoto Agency  
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NORWAY: Aqua Nor 2015 Travel Award - Call for Applications

NORWAY: Aqua Nor 2015 Travel Award - Call for Applications | Aquaculture and Fisheries - World Briefing |

In 2014 the Nor-Fishing Foundation established the Nor-Fishing Foundation Travel Award, which enables one person from the developing world to visit Aqua Nor or Nor-Fishing, an important national and international meeting place to get updated on innovation and technology in the fisheries industry.


The Travel Award covers the cost of air travel from the winner’s home to Trondheim, where the selected candidate will spend a week as a guest of the Nor-Fishing Foundation, including hotel accommodation and some spending money. The winner will also be invited to the main events during the exhibition where he can make contact with a wide network of experts.

The successful candidate should be involved in aquaculture in some way, either as a fish farmer, educator, senior public official, or similar. The winner will be expected to write reports about the experience and to promote Aqua Nor in a general way after returning to the home country.


The deadline for the application is 1 June 2015 and the winner will be announced by the end of June 2015.


Aqua Nor will take place in Trondheim, Norway, 18-21 August 2015.

Applications can be sent by air mail to:


The Nor-Fishing Foundation
Klostergaten 90
7030 Trondheim, Norway
(mark the envelope: “Nor-Fishing Foundation Travel Award”)


or by e-mail:


For further information, please contact:


Mr. Erik Hempel, Director of Communications, Tel.: +47 9084 1124, E-mail:


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WORLDWIDE: Enhanced utilization of fish contributes to Arab food security

WORLDWIDE: Enhanced utilization of fish contributes to Arab food security | Aquaculture and Fisheries - World Briefing |


Food security will remain a significant issue for the Arab countries due to supply uncertainty and a growing population.


The Arab countries have to import more than half of their food commodities under conditions and the rising level of food prices for their imports. Such a rise in prices, especially in the poorer countries have pushed prices of food commodities, including seafood products, preventing the largest sections of the populations in several Arab countries to face extreme difficulties in feeding themselves.
While several Arab countries, particularly the Arabian Gulf countries, have the financial resources to purchase food commodities in spite of the falling price of oil, their main export commodity, it is nevertheless facing the issue of how to feed its rapidly growing population while also maintaining the prevailing living standards. While most Arab countries depend on imports to supplement their food supplies, they will have to increase their import bills thus ending an era of cheap food. The Arab countries are a highly import-oriented economy as they face a shortage of water resources for their agriculture, declining capture fisheries resources as well as rising costs of imports of raw materials. Besides, there is a large demand from a young, growing population.

FAO reports that the combined total fish production of the 22 states from all sources in 2012 reached 3.9 million tonnes of which 1.1 million tonnes (28.2 %) from marine and freshwater aquaculture. The combined total imports of seafood commodities in 2011 reached 961,000 tonnes valued at US$2.32 billion while the combined exports were 721,000 tonnes valued at US $1.69 billion resulting in a substantially negative trade balance in quantity by 240,000 tonnes and in value by $630,000. Moreover, most of the Arab exports are Moroccan canned products to outside the Arab region and most of the imports are from outside the region. Inter- regional trade is rather limited. The per capita of seafood consumption is around 10 kg/annum while the international average is 19.2 kg/annum.

Although fisheries and aquaculture do not contribute significantly to the overall economies of most Arab states, but it provides significant employment, food security and livelihood to many scattered fishing communities in coastal areas. The negative impact of climate change on fisheries resources is already evident in the declining catches from capture fisheries. The artisanal and small scale fisheries sector which land over 85 percent of fish will be severely affected by climate change in their coastal areas especially that they inhabit about 18,000 km of 34,000 km the total length of the coastal zones in the Arab region.

The Arab countries demand seafood productsto supplement other food commodities for a fast growing population. The UN Population Division estimates that in 2015 the population of the Arab countries will reach 385 million people and is projected to rise to 604 million people by 2050.

The Arab region’s populations are increasing and capture fisheries resources are decreasing. Aquaculture production is on the rise to narrow the gap between supply and demand. The rising demand for fish and fishery products prompted countries to look for additional sources to increase supplies. There are some opportunities available to the Arab countries as challenges they will have to meet in order that they could develop improved ways to enhance the utilization of their fish landingsto increase supplies to help ease the food security situation and lower imports. Fish utilization includes by products from processing produces and other areas where losses can be transformed into gains. Discarding creates pollution hazardous to the environment. In general, waste and discards constitute between 30-60 % of the whole fish weight depending on species and contain 15-20 % protein. Preservation of by-catch, better utilization from fisheries processing can turn post-harvest and post-processing activities from losses to gains. With food security concerns the Arab countries with improved management and utilization of their catches and landings increase supplies and generate income as a bonus from post-harvest activities and decrease hazards of pollution to the environment.

Relationship of fisheries to food security

Fisheries and aquaculture make an important contribution to the animal protein supplies of many communities in both the industrialized and developing worlds. In 2012 world fish supplies are at around 19.2 kg per capita with a slight upward trend due to the rapidly increasing contribution from aquaculture.

The role of fish in enhancing food security lies in the importance of fish in supplementing the minimum diet of populations at large, and in particular, of sectors having low purchasing power. In addition, fish has a role to play in food security even if fish workers themselves cannot afford to eat them, as long as the fishery provides them with income sufficient to buy affordable food commodities. In most of the Arab countries especially those with high population growth rate, high per capita food consumption from local production supplemented by imports, may only be able to continue this trend as long as the importers (governments or private sectors) are able to allocate foreign currencies to continue to meet the cost of fish imports.

Fishing and fisheries contributes more than any other animal production activity to the protein intake in most of the developing regions of the world including most of the Arab countries. Fish and fishery products are important for the food security and the alleviation of poverty of many coastal populations in some sections of the populations. But, by all accounts, many wild marine and freshwater resources are on the decline and this is a source of growing economic and social problems. Fisheries, including aquaculture, provide a vital source of food, employment, recreation, trade and economic wellbeing for people throughout the world, both for present and future generations. In the Arab countries fisheries, especially in rural remote areas, are an important economic sector and aquaculture is becoming of importance, both contributing, albeit at different levels, to national development through employment, trade and food security.

Opportunities to boost fish supply to support food security

The Arab region fish processing waste and losses range between 10 to 12% of landings per year, higher in the shrimp fishery. Improving food security efforts require making better use of by-products from processing fisheries by reducing waste and losses and increasing the percentage of seafood products used for direct human consumption. Converting low-value resources into products for direct human-consumption contributes more to food security and income generation than to fish meal. Several fishing techniques are now employed to reduce and/or retrieve bycatch and process it on board/on shore and /or exporting undesired species where these have a market and with improvements in utilization more fish supplies could become available on the market.There are several sources for the fisheries sector to contribute to the supply of seafood commodities beside catching fish from capture fisheries or raising fish from aquaculture. Some of these sources include:

1. Reduction of post-harvest losses:
It is estimated that 64 percent of the World’s fish harvest is still caught in the wild, and the harvesting has reached, and in many areas exceeded, sustainable rates. This, in part, is because the means of exploitation has become so efficient. Fishing fleets use sonar, radar, aircraft and satellites to track shoals. Winches and motors, hand drift nets typically containing more than 18 tonnes of fish. This enables trawlers to increase not only catches but also the by-catch species that are inadvertently netted but are unwanted and consequently, discarded. Therefore, improving food security efforts requires making better use of fish produced by reducing post-harvest losses and increasing the percentage of fish used for direct human consumption. It is estimated that post-harvest losses caused by spoilage amount between 5-10 percent per year of total Arab landings. Converting low-value resources, into products for direct human consumption, rather than reducing them to fishmeal, would also contribute to greater food security. Post-Harvest losses are mainly caused by: - Inappropriate use of preservation methods,


- Distribution and marketing system cannot cope during glut periods,


- Physical loss from discarding of bycatch,


- Absence or shortage of cold storage facilities,


- About 25% of catch is processed into fish meal or oil.


Solutions to reduce post-harvest losses include:


- Wiser use of resources by reducing spoilage and discards,


- Converting low-value resources into products for human consumption,


- Improved fish handling on-board and on-land, processing, preservation and transportation,


- With more fish scarcity, discards and bycatch may become more commercially desirable.


2.Better utilization of by-catch:


The increasing demand for fish and fishery products prompt countries to consider ways to further utilize available resources capable of contributing to human food supplies. The fuller utilization of fishery resources, especially with regard to the utilization of products now being discarded as reject catches or as wasted by-products, is receiving increased attention worldwide. It is estimated that in some fisheries, especially shrimp fisheries in the Arabian Gulf area, has been estimated to be over 50 percent of the total catch. Options for by-catch utilization include the reduction of untargeted species by using exclusion devices (BRD) to allow fish to mature and be harvested as food fish and the recovery of by-catch and its handling on board or on shore.

3. Preservation of bycatch on board:

Bycatch caught by vessels is mostly discarded over board mainly because: no space on board, undesirable or unmarketable species. Reduction of quantity of bycatch during fishing operation should have priority by using various techniques such as BRD. Efforts should be made by fishermen to preserve any bycatch on-board to reduce the volume by mincing to fish silage, or partly processed for human consumption or for production of fish meal and oil onshore. Some bycatch species which are unmarketable locally may be suitable for export to other markets. Fish products for human consumption are more profitable than for manufacturing into fish meal and oil.

4. Preservation of bycatch on shore:

After landing, sorting, processing etc. of bycatch adequate man-power, equipment and infrastructure is required. Locally marketable fish to be delivered to market and locally undesired fish could find a market abroad. Unmarketable fish could be processed into a variety of accepted seafood products for local consumption or export or into fish meal and preservation on-board and full utilization on shore will help generate extra income to fishermen as a bonus from the sea. 

 5. Range of seafood products suitable for direct human consumption:
There is a range of products that may receive additional processing into other seafood products with additives for direct human consumption as well as generating extra income. These may be made from law-value fishes or from leftovers of processing such as:  - Trimmings, fins, heads, sides; tails, intestines, swim bladder, ribs, livers, gall bladder, backbones, some popular bony fishes, etc. from which fish sticks, fish snacks, fish sausages, fish nuggets, fish fingers, patties, melts, paste, strips, burgers, loaves, hot dogs, cold cuts, cakes, salads, etc. can be made.


- Some of these products may be prepared as required by the local markets either breaded, marinated, buttered, seasoned, spiced, sauced, etc. and


- Any of the above products which may not be marketable locally may find markets abroad after packaging in attractive consumer pack coupled with an effective marketing strategy.


- Utilization of waste from tuna, small and large pelagic species, sharks and seashells.


Several countries in the NENA region catch several species of tuna, sardines; mackerel and anchovies. Canning plants normally utilize the main product and discard the offal as waste. The resulting left-overs may also be used to make other productsfor human consumption, for export and local markets or for fish meal.

6.Utilization of waste from shrimp fisheries:

The shrimp fishery in the Arabian Gulf area is responsible for a large proportion of bycatch mostly discarded at sea. If preserved and landed its by-product and waste from processing could provide a good income generation activity:


- Waste from shrimp range from 50-70 % of whole shrimp. Valuable waste is produced from peeling and heading which can be used to generate extra income;


- Shrimp meal is used in aquaculture and in poultry feed to produce deep colored egg yolks which is important for sustainability;


- Chitin/chitosan, available in the shrimp heads, skeleton and shells, may be used in poultry feed to increase weight by 12 %;


- As a chemical, it inhibit fungal infestation of plants, in recycling water and for several medical uses; and


- It is non-allergic, harmless and has great potential in external and internal surgery applications. 


7. Range of products from waste and losses not suitable for human consumption

In general, waste and discards constitute between 30-60 % of the whole fish weight depending on the species and contain 15-20 % protein.After full utilization of main fish and other aquatic animals for direct human consumption for local or export markets there is a range of byproducts that may be made from processing activities. These by-products include:


- Fish skins, scales, undesired small bony fishes; waste from crustacean; waste from canneries of small and large pelagic species; jelly fish, shark parts, seashells and other offal;


- Undesired products for direct human consumption may be converted into various other products which generate extra income for fishermen, farmers, processers and traders; and


- These products include pet and livestock feed, industrial and pharmaceutical products that could be manufactured from bycatch, by-products and waste.


Fish Scales are about 4-10 % of fish. It is a major component of fish processing waste and often discarded with other fish waste. Scales also has some potential uses:



- Scales may be used for heavy metal removal and and as coagulant for the recovery of protein pigments from waste water;


- Preparing high value products including protein bars, cereal bars, protein drinks, smoothies, and joint health and pharmaceutical products;


- Food supplement to improve low bone mineral density in malnutrition and joint diseases;


Fish scales are used as raw material in collagen-based products such as skin moisturizers, anti-aging creams, wrinkle removers, hand creams, cleaning gels, Botox knock-offs and are safe to humans. Fish scales are used in cosmetics, decorations, jewelry making and ornamentation.

8.Quality leather goods from fish skins:

Fish supply more than food. Its skin provides flexible and waterproof material used into making several products which can generate good income:


- After consuming the meat, skins are saved, cleaned with detergents and turned into various products;


- These include boots, mittens, bags, parkas, shoes, purses; hats, belts, garments in several colors for human use;


- Authentic, genuine fish leather are recycled from skins of fish such as carp, perch, seabass, tilapia and salmon;


- Major brands such as Prada, Gucci, Ferragamo, Dior; Nike and Puma use fish leather; and


- They are also suitable for bookbinding, jewelry making and several other uses.


9. Utilization of by-products as fish meal, fish silage for pet , poultry and livestock feed Small boney fish caught in trawls and other trash fish and offal from processing that are not suitable for human consumption could find other uses :



- Main utilization of such waste should be milled into manufacturing fish meal mainly for aquaculture;


- Arab region markets for pet foods such as cats, dogs, birds, and aquatic pets etc. is growing and will help generate extra income; and


- Production of livestock and poultry is increasing. Some countries utilize dried fish for animal feed due to its high protein content.


10. Pet and livestock feed & fish meal and Oil from fish by-products


In terms of added-value from fish waste, the least attractive means of by-product utilization is as a fertilizer.


- Some Arab countries try to develop an arable agricultural industry;


- Second to irrigation, important fertilizers are the main cost constraint;


- Large quantities of sun-dried fish are used as soil conditioners which is a good outlet for bycatch to sun dry unmarketable fish for fertilizers;


- Fish fertilizers provide an excellent source of nutrition for plants and the soil; and Fish fertilizers also help improve microorganisms in the soil and help increase crop growth and microbial activity.


All Arab countries, with varying degrees, consider food security to be the most important and in some countries vital to their national and social security. With a rapidly growing population and a mixed current regional political situation and amidst a generally poor performing economies it is necessary for the Arab countries to protect and increase domestic production of food commodities, including seafood commodities at publicly affordable prices to ensure food security in an atmosphere of globalization and liberalization of international trade.

Food security for Arab countries is considered one of the most important challenges and is vital to insure sufficient and affordable food commodities for the masses because:



- Arab countries has a rapidly growing population which could reach 604 million people by 2050;


- In addition to supplies of seafood, better utilization of bycatch, by-products and waste from post-harvest activities increases market supplies and generate extra income for fishermen, fish farmers, processers and traders;


- Less bycatch means less time for sorting through target catch and the targeted catch would keep better quality and price;


- In order to increase supplies, a comprehensive approach required for proper handling, processing and marketing techniques and product(s) development;


- Better utilization of resulting by-products contributes to extra food supplies for human consumption and income as well as for other useful industrial uses; and


- Public and private initiatives are needed for improvements in utilizing bycatch and waste mainly in the small-scale sector as well as the planned aquaculture projects planned by several Arab countries.


The above set of measures may be taken, in part or in whole, by Arab fisheries companies and responsible institutions and the private sector which are responsible for producing more fish domestically, in order to reach better and more sustainable growth in fish production. These measures may be to not only increase fish and fishery products on the markets as a means of reducing or controlling the rise in prices but also may help reduce imports thus preserving hard currencies especially for Arab countries that are pressed for foreign exchange.

However, it should be noted that these measures may not present suitable solutions equally for all countries. However, what is clear is that the fastest and easiest way to help households in a food prices is to have a system that can distribute cash to people quickly and efficiently. This of course assumes that people can then purchase the food that is available. It is important to recognize that food availability is a concern to many Arab governments.

Article by Izzat H. Feidi, Fisheries Consultant  

Pictures from Arab Agriculture Year Book 2015



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WORLDWIDE: FAO meets the global seafood industry at 10th NASF March 3-5

WORLDWIDE: FAO meets the global seafood industry at 10th NASF March 3-5 | Aquaculture and Fisheries - World Briefing |

As part of its efforts to interact closely with the global fisheries and seafood industry, FAO will participate in the up-coming North Atlantic Seafood Forum (NASF) in Bergen, Norway 3- 5 March. Headed by Arni Mathiesen - Assistant Director General for Fisheries and Aquaculture, FAO will be present with several high-level representatives. Mr. Mathiesen will deliver an NASF opening address March 4th addressing “Outlook for world seafood trade to 2030”.


Says Assistant Director General Mathiesen: “2015 is an exciting year for us at the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations. Not only does FAO itself celebrate 70 years, but we also mark the twentieth anniversary of the Code of Conduct for Responsible Fisheries. We are proud to mark this important milestone for sustainable fisheries here with you at the 10th NASF this year”.    



The Code, laying forth principles and standards for national and international efforts to ensure sustainable exploitation of aquatic living resources, was unanimously adopted at the FAO Conference on 31 October 1995 by all FAO Member countries.  


We believe that the debate and unanimous decision were quite progressive for the time. Even twenty years later, the principles of the Code are robust and form the basis for more recent international agreements, including instru ments in the fight against IUU fishing, and the guidelines on small-scale fisheries guidelines adopted last year. The Code is also important for eco-labelling issues, for which FAO has developed a number of guidelines for certification.  


Moreover, the Code is also the basis for the Blue Growth Initiative. FAO is actively promoting Blue Growth as a coherent approach for the sustainable, integrated and socio-economically sensitive management of oceans and wetlands, focusing on capture fisheries, aquaculture, ecosystem services, trade and social protection of coastal communities.  

Today, informed consumers are increasingly aware of and vocal about the need to safeguard our natural resources for future generations. Therefore, the Code of Conduct and the Blue Growth initiative are more important than ever to ensure consumers as well as industry stakeholders that their  choices are sustainable.  



We believe that industry is an important partner for FAO in working together to ensure that sustainable approaches meet an increased demand for fish and fish products for a growing population. As illustrated in the 2014 State of World Fisheries And Aquaculture (SOFIA), figures show that world capita fish consumption increased from an average of 9.9 kg in the 1960s, to 19.2 kg in 2012. And our most recent estimates indicate that this reached 20 kg per capita in 2014. As also reported in SOFIA, fish provide more than 2.9 billion people with about 20 percent of their animal protein, and 4.3 billion people with about 15 percent of such proteins.  


Meanwhile, the aggregate FAO Fish price index increased markedly from early 2002, reaching a record high in October 2013. And after some weakening since then, prices are rising once again.  


The latest SOFIA also reports that aquaculture continues  to grow, albeit at a slowing rate. According to FAO figures, aquaculture attained another all-time high in 2012, with 90. 4 million tonnes (valued at $137.7 billion USD).  



We believe that there are more opportunities than ever before for the fisheries sector to play a key role in ensuring food security for a world population expected to reach 9 billion by 2050. FAO’s mandate focuses on food security – the ability to produce enough safe fish for food at affordable prices for world populations. 



To meet these objectives, partnerships with industry are crucial. And as informed consumers make purchasing decisions that increasingly pose the difficult questions about sustainability and global impact when purchasing locally, partnerships between FAO, governments, partner institutions, and industry are even more relevant today than they were in the past.   



We look forward to close engagement with industry over these days at NASF, and in the years ahead, as we work in partnership to ensure the adoption of the principles of the Code of Conduct as the basis for the Blue Growth Initiative, while simultaneously producing enough safe and nutritious food fish to meet the  needs of our growing population.   



FAO representatives will participate in numerous discussions during the two days of the conference.  


For more information, please contact Jose Estors-Carballo, for communication issues, please contact Kimberly Sullivan

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ΕΛΛΑΔΑ: Ιχθυοκαλλιέργειες, εντείνεται ο ανταγωνισμός Ελλάδας - Τουρκίας

ΕΛΛΑΔΑ: Ιχθυοκαλλιέργειες, εντείνεται ο ανταγωνισμός Ελλάδας - Τουρκίας | Aquaculture and Fisheries - World Briefing |

Οι εξελίξεις στην κυριότερες αγορές  για την τσιπούρα και το λαβράκι


Σημάδια υποχώρησης δείχνει η παραγωγή του κλάδου ιχθυοκαλλιεργειών στην Τουρκία το τρέχον έτος, καθώς πλέον η γείτων επικεντρώνεται στην επίτευξη κερδών. Άλλωστε έχει καταφέρει να υπερκεράσει την Ελλάδα σε ό,τι αφορά το λαβράκι, έχοντας εξελιχθεί πλέον στον μεγαλύτερο παραγωγό στον κόσμο, ενώ διεκδικεί την πρωτιά και στην παραγωγή τσιπούρας. Την ίδια ώρα οι ελληνικές εταιρείες παλεύουν ακόμη να αντιμετωπίσουν τα τεράστια χρέη τους σε συνεργασία με τους πιστωτές τους, έτσι ώστε να μην οδηγηθούν στην πτώχευση.


Σύμφωνα με την τελευταία έκθεση του FAO Globefish (πρόκειται για το παράρτημα του Οργανισμού Γεωργίας και Τροφίμων του ΟΗΕ που ασχολείται με την αλιεία) οι παράγοντες που προκάλεσαν τη ραγδαία ανάπτυξη των τουρκικών ιχθυοκαλλιεργειών είναι οι ακόλουθοι:


-Οι μεγάλες επενδύσεις και οι κρατικές επιδοτήσεις επέτρεψαν στα τουρκικά προϊόντα να πωλούνται σε χαμηλές τιμές στις διεθνείς αγορές και να γίνουν εξαιρετικά ανταγωνιστικά, ειδικά σε σύγκριση με τα αντίστοιχα ελληνικά προϊόντα. Αυτό έγινε ακόμη πιο εμφανές στις αναδυόμενες αγορές.


-Το ρωσικό εμπάργκο σε σειρά προϊόντων της Ευρωπαϊκής Ένωσης, συμπεριλαμβανομένων και των ελληνικών ψαριών, ευνόησε τις τουρκικές εξαγωγές σε λαβράκι και τσιπούρα προς τη Ρωσία. Η Τουρκία ήταν ήδη ο κύριος προμηθευτής της ρωσικής αγοράς σε ό,τι αφορά τα παραπάνω είδη, αλλά με το εμπάργκο ισχυροποίησε περαιτέρω τη θέση της.


Βάσει της έκθεσης του FAO Globefish η μεγαλύτερη πρόκληση που αντιμετωπίζουν τώρα οι Τούρκοι είναι το κόστος των ιχθυοτροφών. Η αύξηση των διεθνών τιμών στις τροφές που χρησιμοποιούνται στις ιχθυοκαλλιέργειες οδηγούν τους Τούρκους παραγωγούς στη χρήση φθηνότερων υποκατάστατων. Αυτά, όμως, έχουν αρνητική επίδραση στην ανάπτυξη και στο βάρος των ψαριών.


Οι εξελίξεις στις κυριότερες αγορές για την τσιπούρα και το λαβράκι έχουν συνοπτικά ως εξής:


-Η ιταλική αγορά έδειξε σημάδια ανάκαμψης το 2014, κάτι που ευνόησε τις ελληνικές εταιρείες, αφού η Ιταλία αποτελεί έναν από τους κυριότερους προορισμούς των ελληνικών ψαριών ιχθυοκαλλιέργειας. Οι Ιταλοί εισάγουν ψάρια και από την Τουρκία, ενώ υπάρχει και εγχώρια παραγωγή.


-Το μερίδιο των ελληνικών ψαριών στην Ισπανία υποχώρησε από 73% το2012 σε 54% το 2014. Την ίδια ώρα το μερίδιο των τουρκικών αυξήθηκε σε 29% από 18% το 2012. Η ζήτηση αυξήθηκε και στην ισπανική αγορά, η οποία προμηθεύεται ψάρια και από τη Γαλλία.


-Στη Γαλλία το 2014 δόθηκε έμφαση στην εγχώρια παραγωγή με συνέπεια να εξασθενήσουν οι εισαγωγές.


-Οι εξαγωγές ψαριών από την Ελλάδα στο Ηνωμένο Βασίλειο μειώθηκαν δραματικά το 2014, ενώ την ίδια ώρα οι εξαγωγές ψαριών από Τουρκία διπλασιάστηκαν. Διπλασιασμός των εισαγωγών από Τουρκία παρατηρήθηκε και στις ΗΠΑ, ενώ αυξητικές τάσεις προτίμησης προς τα φθηνά τουρκικά ψάρια καταγράφονται και στη Γερμανία.


Της Δήμητρας Μανιφάβα -



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NORWAY: Environmental audit for cod

NORWAY: Environmental audit for cod | Aquaculture and Fisheries - World Briefing |

A new tool can document sustainable cod and haddock fishing in the North Atlantic. A European Good Practice standard has been created.


The European white fish industry is subject to strict rules for documentation and traceability. Many of the world’s fish stocks are highly threatened and powerful forces are warning consumers not to eat white fish. Even though the cod and haddock stocks in the North Atlantic are still healthy and sustainable, the products have problems when they come onto the market in competition with cheap farmed species from Asia and Africa, and it is far from self-evident which products are sustainable and which are not.


In the three-year WhiteFish project, industry organisations and 15 researchers from all over Europe have developed a new method and standard to document the environmental impact and sustainability of cod and haddock. This is about documenting everything from the individual fishing vessel’s environmental audit, including fuel consumption and CO2 emissions, to the fisheries’ significance to society.


«We have systemised a huge quantity of data about everything that happens relating to harvesting, processing and distribution,» says Scientist Kathryn Donnelly of Nofima.


The fisheries industry is subject to strict rules for documentation and traceability. Using the standard developed in WhiteFish, individual companies can plot information about their operation and calculate their environmental audit and sustainability, which means that individual companies can identify where they could improve in terms of the environment, welfare and economy.


The Batch-based Calculation of Sustainability Impact (BCSI) method is based on a huge quantity of collected data and makes it possible for those in the industry to make ongoing sustainability assessments for their own products.


WhiteFish has been a three-year (2012-2014) EU project, with Senior Scientist Petter Olsen of Nofima as project coordinator. The method that was developed is now being implemented and tested in practice and the associated standard is under consultation with industry organisations and other stakeholders.

Project summary and opportunities

Watch video to learn more about the standard and how it can be used:




Contact personPetter Olsen - Senior Scientist

Tlf: +47 77 62 92 31

Adam Harrison's curator insight, March 22, 3:28 PM

Pollution has been a major problem globally and has majorly effected our air as well as our water, which are two of the main things everything living thing needs to be able to live. However our air and water are poisoned daily, which has effected on our overall heath of our planet, humanity is literally poisoning them selfs for profits. Todays global food supply is not the same as it was in past generations, the european white fish industry is now focused on sustainability focusing on three main pillars social, economic and environmental sustainability, its a standard that they believe will make a difference in the way their company is ran, they plan to document everything from factories processing to the total emissions that their boats let out. The white fish industry has been threatened as consumer has been warned not to consume white fish such as Cod, cheap asian and African white fish where a major thing to blame for this issue. Overall i'm happy to hear that companies are striving towards sustainability, more companies need to look into the future of our planet and make a better future without harming profits.

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MAGAZINE: Science & Solutions - Aquaculture - Issue 18

MAGAZINE: Science & Solutions - Aquaculture - Issue 18 | Aquaculture and Fisheries - World Briefing |
In this issue: Can natural strategies effectively combat EMS?; How aflatoxins threaten Pangasius catfish production
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