Ankara (April, 2014) Eight trout producers and fish culture experts from four Central Asia countries participated to the workshop with the aim of strengthening cage culture activities which carries a great commercial potential for the fisheries sector of the region.
According to FAO Statistics in 2012, global inland cultured based fish production that is harvested from mostly reservoir or lake-based cages reached to 44 million tones. Central Asia region contributes to the overall production with 10 thousand tones, which underlines the significance of supporting individual enterprises and encouraging national governments in implementing net cage culture activities in these countries.
Under the scope of Central Asia Regional Programme for Fisheries and Aquaculture Development (FISHDEV), the biggest fisheries and aquaculture project under FAO-Turkey Partnership Programme (FTPP), regional adhoc training on Trout Culture in Net Cages was held with the participation of Uzbekistan, Kyrgyzstan, Azerbaijan and Tajikistan between 25-28 March 2014, in Soma, Manisa.
After the three regional trainings on cage and trout culture that had been previously held in Turkey and Kyrgyzstan, the adhoc training was designed based on the need of full-fledged practical training on trout culture in net cages.
The training was organized by FAO in close cooperation of Azer Altin Trout Company Ltd. which is one of the biggest trout producer in net cages, in a dam lake with their annual 900 tones production.
In the first day of the workshop, general information on the importance of net cage culture was emphasized and some essential remarks on net culture were made before the practical training. The construction of a net cage farm, cage culture components and mooring were introduced by mooring system experts from Asaqua, an aquaculture supplier company based in Izmir.
Aside from the technical features of net cage culture and aquaculture production, environmental impacts of cage culture and legal obligations were also discussed by academics in the first part of workshop.
Theoretical section was followed by a practical training which included topics such as net changing, net cleaning, fish selection, feeding, grading and harvesting. Participants, who have different fisheries experience and backgrounds, have also found chance to gain practical experience on auto feeding and hand feeding.
The given workshop was described by the participants as a new opportunity that could be transformed into a commercial enterprise in Central Asian countries. Ultimately, it is expected that they are going to play a key role to establish a cage culture unit and assist in developing national strategies and policies on cage culture in their countries.