on investment, research, information, and public perception would be needed. Challenges
for increasing aquacultures contribution to food security, poverty alleviation and
rural livelihoods will have to be addressed.
The essential challenge for future aquaculture development would be to ensure that the
full potential of aquaculture is realized and a nutritious, safe and quality product,
which is affordable, acceptable, and accessible to all sectors of the society, is
produced. In doing so we need to address the following needs and opportunities.
We have to assist in feeding people in this millennium. This means investing in food
security! Aquaculture can play a significant role in this respect!
We have to assist in social development, poverty alleviation, and improving livelihoods of
people. In doing so, there is a need to increase emphasis on aquaculture and aqua-farmers
in national social and economic development plans and endeavours with the view to
enhancing institutional and financial support for the sector.
This can only be achieved though investing in human resources including existing and
future aquaculture practitioners as well as government and non-government agencies and
institutions. Investing in training, education, extension, information and communication
are important in this respect. Use of modern information and communication tools and
methods such as the Internet, and other state of the art communication methodologies will
have to be given due consideration, as will the essential requirement to ensure
broad-based public access, especially the farmers, to these sources of information.
We must create and provide an enabling environment, with an appropriate policy, legal and
institutional framework to facilitate access to key development resources, such as
financial resources and knowledge. There is a strong need for greater emphasis on
institutional support, that is support not only to government ministries and public sector
agencies dealing with administration, extension, and research and development, but also to
organizations and institutions representing private sector, consumers and other
Aquaculture development, especially if it is to be sustainable and for food security, may
need to be stimulated, at least in the beginning, so there should be a key point on
increasing access to credit for farmers, producers, and local marketing.
It is important to understand the investment opportunities in the sector. In an era of
globalization, it is imperative to emphasize national and international trends of trade.
Trade of aquaculture produce, input supplies, capital, and of information is important to
mention. Aquaculture dependence on key natural resources
water, land, seed, nutrients. There is strong pressure or drive for more production and
marketing systems, which are more efficient and more effective in terms of the resource
utilization. In this respect, we should invest in research on developing production and
marketing systems with better resources utilization and more efficient performance.
During production, there should be emphasis on targeting the consumers. We must emphasize
the difference between mass production and production for the masses. For example, trends
of formerly expensive produce such as salmon and shrimp are increasingly becoming
affordable by larger segments of the population. We should compete and complement other
food producing sectors and providers.
The aquaculture produce should be acceptable to all sectors of the society. Tremendous
gains will be possible through improved biotechnology, genetic modification, improved
nutrition, probiotics, disease diagnosis and treatment.
However, the problems are consumer resistance to perceived risks stemming from
unnatural products, ethical problems and fear of unknown technologies will
affect potential gain. Environmental and human health issues will slow development or
reduce market access. Strategic solutions are required.
We should emphasize biosafety issues, development and promotion of biotechnology that
conserves environment; we should promote policies that support ethical issues of welfare
and autonomy, and emphasize labelling and transparency for production process and
beneficiaries. There is a need to increase the impact of research to understand technical
and other constraints and to enhance the applicability and use of research results in the
development of strategies to overcome these challenges.
Stakeholder participation and consultation in aquaculture development decision-making, and
policy planning should be duly considered. Aquacultures potential for social
empowerment should be harnessed, and the involvement of more women in aquaculture
development should be given due respect. The trust between producers and consumers needs
to be improved and avenues must be found to achieve this. Public relations, campaigns, and
labelling issues will have to be addressed.
The role of regional and interregional cooperation in achieving the future development
goals for aquaculture should be reviewed and strengthened, based on the benefits to
aquaculture development from regional and interregional cooperation seen over the past 25
years. There are considerable opportunities to increase the impact on aquaculture
development through regional and interregional cooperation and therefore further
strengthening of such cooperation is recommended.