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FAO Expert Workshop

Use of feed and fertilizer for sustainable aquaculture development

Wuxi, Jiangsu Province, P.R. China, 18–21 March 2006

in collaboration with the Network of Aquaculture Centres in Asia-Pacific (NACA) and the Freshwater Fisheries Research Centre (FFRC), Wuxi, China

Mohammad R. Hasan1

Aquaculture has achieved a spectacular growth over the last three decades and it is anticipated that global aquaculture production will continue to increase. The average growth rate of the sector during 1970 and 2003 is 8.68 percent per year while that of capture fisheries during this period is 1.15 percent. Aquaculture has been the fastest growing food production sector in many countries of the world for the last two decades while the capture fishery is experiencing a declining trend. Aquaculture has therefore, contributed significantly to food security and poverty alleviation in different parts of the world in parallel with the development of profit oriented entrepreneurship.

Feed accounts for about 60–80 percent of operation cost in intensive aquaculture, while feed and fertilizers represent about 30–60 percent of the total cost of aquaculture production in semi-intensive aquaculture system. Fertilizers and feed resources will, therefore continue to dominate aquaculture needs. To address the issues of feed and fertilizer use for sustainable aquaculture development, the FAO Fisheries Department through its Inland Water Resources and Aquaculture Services (FIRI) has initiated a work programme “Study and analysis of feed and nutrients (including fertilizers) for sustainable aquaculture development”. After careful review of the existing status of aquaculture in relation to feed and fertilizer and with due recognition to the recommendations made by the First and Second Sessions of the COFI Sub-committee on Aquaculture (SCA) in Beijing, Peoples' Republic of China and Trondheim, Norway, respectively, the following key issues have been prioritized:a) analysis of status and trends in aquaculture production (with particular reference to fish and crustacean species that feed on aquafeeds); and b) analyses of issues, trend and challenges of feed and fertilizer resources for sustainable aquaculture development with particular reference to extended extensive, semi-intensive and intensive farming systems in developing countries of Asia, Africa and Latin America.

The above work programme is being executed by FIRI in close collaboration of FAO regional and sub-regional offices and in consultation with Regional Organization (e.g., NACA), government Department of Fisheries, Universities and National Research Institutions of FAO member countries. As a part of this work programme, a number of country reviews from Asia (e.g., Bangladesh, China, India, Indonesia, Iran,Thailand, the Philippines, Viet Nam), Africa (e.g., Cameroon, Ghana, Kenya, Malawi, Nigeria, Uganda and Egypt) and a regional review on Latin America (to include Mexico, Venezuela, Brazil, Ecuador, Peru and Cuba) have been commissioned. Further, the country reviews of Asia and Africa are planned to be synthesized into Asia and Africa regional reviews, respectively; and these three regional reviews are to be synthesized into one global synthesis. Further six country case studies on “economics of aquaculture feed management”are being carried out in six countries in Asia (e.g., Bangladesh, China, India,Thailand, the Philippines and Viet Nam).

To broaden the horizon of the consultative process, it has been decided to organize a targeted workshop on “Use of feed and fertilizer for sustainable aquaculture development”, in Wuxi, Jiangsu Province, P.R. China on 18–21 March 2006. Experts from FAO member countries, regional organizations and FAO headquarters and regional offices are expected to participate and the results of the country reviews, regional and global synthesis and synthesis of the case studies on economics of feed management will be presented in the workshop. Results drawn from the reviews, case studies and presentations will be analyzed during the workshop, relevant management options/ measures will be examined and further issues of immediate concern will be identified. Eventually, it is expected that it will assist the FAO to develop policy guidelines and strategies to implement the management options for optimal and sustainable utilization of feed and fertilizer resources for aquaculture development with due recognition of variability between regions with respect to farming systems and practices. The output in the form of management options and policy guidelines thus generated by the consultative process including the workshop will eventually assist the FAO member countries in the implementation and promotion of relevant provisions of FAO's Code of Conduct for Responsible Fisheries. It is expected that workshop proceedings, country, regional and global reviews/synthesis will be published as an FAO Fisheries Technical Paper “Wise-use of feed and fertilizer resources for sustainable aquaculture development”. The location of the workshop was chosen because of the importance and experience of freshwater aquaculture in China and the contribution of aquaculture research and development by the Freshwater Fisheries Research Centre (FFRC), located in Wuxi.

Further details of the workshop can be obtained from:

Mohammad R. Hasan at FIRI
e-mail: Mohammad.Hasan@fao.org

Mohammad R. Hasan, FAO

Broodstock of African catfish (Clarias gariepinus) fed with pelleted diet in an outdoor rearing tank, Ibadan, Nigeria

Mohammad R. Hasan, FAO

African catfish fed with pelleted diet using a locally manufactured demand feeder, Ibadan, Nigeria

Mohammad R. Hasan, FAO

Groundnut husk thrown in a corner of a pond to feed Nile tilapia (Oreochromis niloticus), Kumasi, Ghana. Groundnut husk is one of the most commonly used supplemental feeds for tilapia farming in Ghana

1 Mohammad R. Hasan
Inland Water Resources and Aquaculture Service,
FAO Fisheries Department, Rome


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