1. Characteristics, structure and resources of the sector
    1. Summary
    2. History and general overview
    3. Human resources
    4. Farming systems distribution and characteristics
    5. Cultured species
    6. Practices/systems of culture
  2. Sector performance
    1. Production
    2. Market and trade
    3. Contribution to the economy
  3. Promotion and management of the sector
    1. The institutional framework
    2. The governing regulations
    3. Applied research, education and training
  1. Trends, issues and development
    1. References
      1. Bibliography
      2. Related links
    Characteristics, structure and resources of the sector
    Aquaculture development in Peru is incipient and mainly oriented to production of the following species: shrimp (Litopenaeus spp.), fan shell or sea scallop, trout (Oncorhynchus spp.), tilapia (Oreochromis spp.) and some Amazonian fish. Possibilities for development of aquaculture are high due to the great diversity of species with culture potential, such as Amazonian fish (Cachama or “gamitana” Colossoma sp, Pacu Piaractus sp., among others) as well as other hydro biological resources of marine origin. Aquaculture may become an important economic resource. The country offers good environmental conditions: climate, large water surface areas apt for aquatic activities. For example, in the Peruvian Amazon some 80 000 tonnes of fish are consumed annually, which is part of the region’s food security and an important source of employment for local fishermen communities (Brack, Antonio, 2003. Amazonía: Biodiversidad y Bionegocios).
    History and general overview
    Aquaculture started in Peru in 1934 when the rainbow trout (Oncorhyncus mykiss) was introduced for sports fishing, thus becoming the first freshwater species to be cultured in the country. Later, during the 1970s, the culture of penaid shrimp was started in the north of the country where semi-intensive cultures ventures were launched, until 1998 when the activity diminished seriously with the appearance of the White Spot Viral Syndrome. In the 1980s small scale projects for the cultivation of tilapia and sea scallop were initiated; their intensification took place at the beginning of year 2000.

    Aquaculture activity in Peru is distributed throughout the country, with major emphasis in specific zones. According to production volumes, shrimp culture is predominant on the coast, particularly in the region of tumbes (93.4 percent) and piura (6.6 percent), and sea scallop, mainly in ancash (79.12 percent) and lima (19.13 percent); with a production of 7 311.51 tonnes and 2 961 tonnes for the year 2003, for sea scallops and shrimp, respectively. On the mountains, trout culture is predominant, with a production 2 808.27 tonnes in 2003, concentrated in the regions of junin (40.93 percent) and puno (45.18 percent). Finally, in the jungle area, the culture of Amazonian fish occurs (cachama or gamitana, pacu and netted prochilod or boquichico) with a production of 126.16 tonnes during 2003, mainly in the regions of ucayali (42.39 percent), San Martín (30.13 percent) and loreto (21.18 percent); and tilapia, with a production of 113.06 tonnes in 2003, particularly in the region of San Martín (99.47 percent).
    Human resources
    Human resources engaged in aquaculture, amount to 12 650 people approximately, including direct and indirect jobs. Details are shown in the Table 1:

    Table 1. Personnel and positions occupied in aquaculture
    Description Amount
    Professionals 400
    Technicians 500
    Administrative 100
    Field workers (full time) 7 000
    Field workers (part time) 1 000
    Owners 1 300
    Lake workers 2 000
    Related activities (post harvest) 350
    TOTAL 12 650
    Farming systems distribution and characteristics
    For year 2003, a total of 9 685.12 ha have been granted permits for the practice of aquaculture, 91.5 percent of them are within the marine zone, and the other 8.5 percent are inland waters. Of this total, 6 373.24 ha (65.8 percent) correspond to private land operations and as such have been granted the corresponding authorizations while 3 311.87 ha (34.2 percent) are State owned lands, under a concession or state lease. Of the total leased land, 89 percent has been granted by the Ministry of Production (PRODUCE), while the rest has been assigned by the Regional Fisheries Directorates (now DIREPROS). Even though the Ministry of Production (PRODUCE) has granted the majority of permits for marine water cultures (92.7 percent), the Regional Fisheries Directorates (DIREPROS) have granted 53.2 percent of the permits for inland waters (69.1 percent correspond to authorizations and 36.6 percent to concessions). This could be interpreted as the first autonomous decisions in the regional administration of these resources.

    Table 2. Summary of aquaculture authorizations and concessions
    Type Granted by PRODUCE Granted by DIREPROS Total
    Ha % Ha % Ha %
    CONTINENTAL 387.07 4.5 440.38 40.6 827.44 8.5
    Authorizations 130.73 33.8 292.68 66.5 423.41 51.2
    Concessions 256.33 66.2 147.70 33.5 404.03 48.8
    MARITIME 8 214.19 95.5 643.49 59.4 8 857.67 91.5
    Authorizations 5 320.80 64.8 629.04 97.8 5 949.83 67.2
    Concessions 2 893.39 35.2 14.45 2.2 2 907.84 32.8
    Total Authorizations 5 451.53 63.4 921.71 85.0 6 373.24 65.8
    Total Concessions 3 149.72 36.6 162.15 15.0 3 311.87 34.2
    TOTAL 8 601.25 89 1083.86 11 9 685.12 100
    Source: PRODUCE. Yearly Statistics, 2003.

    Cultured species
    Shrimp Aquaculture
    This activity is based on Penaeid shrimp culture (Litopenaeus spp.), which was initiated in the 1970s. Due to climatic considerations and as defined by the Peruvian Maritime Institute Sea (IMARPE), this culture was mostly restricted to areas adjacent to mangrove systems of the Department of Tumbes (in the frontier with Ecuador); the most prevalent practices were under semi-intensive systems. At present, new applied technologies have allowed the expansion of shrimp culture towards lower temperatures areas.

    Aquaculture production is mostly based on the white shrimp Penaeus vannamei, although in the past, the blue shrimp L. stylirostris was also cultured. These species are distributed along the west coast of the Americas from Mexico to northern Peru.

    Sea scallop cultivation
    The decade of the 1990s was characterised by the assimilation of Japanese culture technologies by Peruvian producers. The culture of fan shell (sea scallop) was developed only by two enterprises over an extension of 271 ha in the year 1990; at present it is produced by 44 enterprises (small and large) over a leased surface of 2 719.75 ha.

    It is estimated that Peru has some 14 164 ha apt for the development of marine cultures; of which 86 percent correspond to the region of Ancash (7 228.14ha) and to Ica (5 017.97 ha). Nevertheless, as of December 2003, leased and authorized areas amount to only 8 858 ha. Of this total, 3 033 ha are dedicated to the cultivation of the fan shell.

    At present, of the 44 referred enterprises, 26 holding 1 662.8 ha are located in the Ancash region; followed by the Ica region, where 18 enterprises occupy 136.8 ha; and the Piura Region has 8 enterprises that develop their activities in 787,6 ha. The majority are large scale operations, with the exception of those located in the Ica region which are relatively small.

    Trout culture
    Oncorhynchus mykiss, better known as “rainbow trout”, is cultured in Peru. The main producers in Peru are considered large scale enterprises (with an annual production superior to 50 tonnes). Grouped under an association, their production has become significant. The major production Departments are Junin and Puno, the latter includes production in the Titicaca Lake.

    In the Department of Junin (Central Mountain Range) 3 enterprises hold the totality of production:
    1. Piscifactoria de Los Andes, S.A. (largest producer and only exporter);
    2. SAIS Pachacayo; and
    3. Estación Pesquera de Ingenio (fish culture station belonging to the Fisheries Under Ministry).

    In the Department of Puno, aquaculture in the Titicaca Lake reached a production volume of 1 206 tonnes during the year 2002. The main regional producers are: the Titicaca Lake Trout Producers Association (APT) (which distributes 4 tonnes of trout in Lima per week), Emucosa, Empresa Comercializadora S.A.C., as well as producers from the area of Lagunillas. The more developed trout cage culture producers associations are located in the region of Puno: Lagunillas, Leque Leque, Totorani, Jarpaña y Pacobamba; all of which have demonstrated consistency in the quality of their produce. In this matter, Lagunillas has managed to standardize the product and maintain sufficient levels of production, mainly due to managerial discipline built on the principle of improving income based on high quality.

    Extensive trout culture systems are important in Puno, Moquegua and Tacna, where the main enterprises are: Lago Azul de Pasto Grande, Suches Huatire and Jucumarine, with important export volumes to Bolivia.

    The total surface area dedicated to production of trout in Peru is 394.6 ha, of which 45.2 ha correspond to 393 authorizations and 349,4 ha correspond to 162 concessions granted by PRODUCE. The larger water bodies are also assigned by concessions, mainly for re-stocking and culture in floating cages; for example 83.7 ha have been assigned in concessions within the regions of La Libertad and Puno.

    Amazonian fish culture
    Production of cachama or gamitana, pacu, and netted prochilod or boquichico in fishfarms is gradually substituting capture fisheries, where the more valuable species (paiche or arapaima, cachama or gamitana, pacu, tucunare, corvina, boquichico, etc.) are at the limit of their exploitation, and thus severing their survival. Even so, landings in the Peruvian Amazonian, remain relatively stable at the level of 100 000 tonnes per year, of which 75 percent are consumed locally by riverside populations; which present the highest per capita consumption rates nearing approximately 100 kg/per capita annually.

    As of 1999, 700 ha of fishponds had been recorded in the Peruvian Amazonian; over 50 percent of them within the Department of San Martin. However, at present the majority of the existing infrastructure is not under operation. The Ministry of Production reported that as of 2002 only 290 ha had been authorized for fish culture activities in the Departments of Loreto, San Martin, and Ucayali.

    Tilapia aquaculture
    Culture of tilapia in Peru has experienced a significant expansion in the high rainforest, mainly in the Department of San Martin (border with Brazil). On the north coast, some important projects are being launched which are linked to the use of dams and reservoirs of the irrigation schemes of Chira-Piura and San Lorenzo. One of such projects is being conducted by FONDEPES in the reservoir of Poechos, where tilapia is cultured in floating cages. Other recent experiences include production in the Department of Piura, where the American Quality Company has made an important investment.

    At the national level, the total surface area habilitated for tilapia culture has reached 74.66 ha, of which 77.08 percent (57.55 ha) are located in the regions of Piura and San Martin and include 39 authorizations and 3 concessions. It should be pointed out that of the entirety of habilitated areas, 46.08 ha (61.72 percent) are dedicated to the exclusive culture of tilapia, while the remaining areas are also authorized for the culture of other species, mainly Amazonian fish species.
    Practices/systems of culture
    Shrimp culture
    The technology applied in semi intensive cultures has reached satisfactory standards, attaining average yields of 2 tonnes/ha/year (it should be considered that not every enterprise obtains two annual cycles; some achieve only one or one and a half).

    On the other hand, in intensive cultures, producers have opted for a reduction in the size of ponds, the treatment of supply water, lining of ponds with “liners”, use of aerators and utilisation of probiotic micro organisms and bio-conditioners (pro biotics and bio conditioners were introduced a couple of years ago at a limited scale. At present, these products are supplied by several foreign suppliers and can even be produced “in situ”. Its availability and efficiency become critical as culture intensification increases); using similar technologies as those employed in other countries where yields have reached an average ranging from 5 to 10 tonnes/ha. This technology improved remarkably with the use of pond covers which provide a green-house effect, attaining yields of 10 to 15 tonnes/ha per cycle, which lasts a little more than three months (The reduction of the cultivation period to 100 days, allows achieving three annual cycles, thus trebling production per surface area).

    Culture of the sea scallop
    The required infrastructure for this culture depends on the size of the enterprise and the system used. The most frequently practices in Peru include the suspension culture and the bottom culture; the latter is mainly used by artisanal fishermen and small marine culture producers. Product processing is usually done by contracted services in nearby freezing plants.

    The suspended culture practice is the most widely spread. Its main phases include: i) seed or spat collection, ii) intermediate culture or pre-growth, iii) final culture or on-growth, and iv) harvest.

    The spat collection phase requires the introduction of seed collecting mesh bags (cultch) in the sea. The disposition of these collecting bags allows the creation of a curtain or barrier to the free-swimming settling larvae. The phase of intermediate culture or pre-growth starts with the removal of the spat from the collecting bags once it reaches an average size ranging from 5 to 25 mm. Spat is stocked in pearl nets at densities varying according to the size of seed. In normal conditions this phase lasts from 3 to 6 months. The final culture or on-growth phase is characterised by the use of lantern nets. Juveniles are stocked in lantern nets once they’ve reached 40 mm at densities ranging from 80 to 250 pieces per net compartment. This phase lasts for 6 months approximately, until commercial size is reached (5-8 cm). At harvest, scallops are removed from the lantern nets for grading and classification and to processing and packaging plants.

    The advantages in the suspended cultivation system are the simplicity and ease with which shellstock can be manipulated, a greater production capacity in relation to other systems, a higher rate of survival, satisfactory growth rates, few losses from escaping organisms, and easy detachment at harvesting. Among its disadvantages, the following are to be mentioned: high cost, need of floating devices since a wide variety of species –mainly algae- settle on the nettings increasing their weight, the need of a great amount of anchorages to avoid the inclination of the lantern nets as a consequence of currents which causes overcrowding of shells, and finally the vast surface area and space needed for the storing of confinement and culture materials.

    The bottom culture is the most frequently used in Bahía de Paracas (Ica). For this system, an area is enclosed, using recycled fishing materials such as nets, mesh, corks and buoys. Among the advantages of this system (in comparison to the suspended cultivation system) are: lower production costs, high stocking speed, and the greater amount of cultured organisms per cultured area; among its disadvantages, the following are to be mentioned: higher mortality rates and slower growth rates, as well as the fact that shellstock is far more influenced by the natural dynamics of the ecosystem.

    Cultivation of trout
    During the on-growth phase, rather diverse infrastructure and production extension systems are used, including concrete tanks, earthen ponds, and sometimes, floating cages.

    Earthen ponds are used either by small scale or commercial producers. Characteristics among trout producers are very different, considering the production system and capacity, degree of technological development, training as well as management, marketing and financial abilities, among others. According to the production system, producers may be classified as extensive, semi intensive (in cages), or intensive.

    Extensive production systems consist of stocking of fingerlings in lagoons or other bodies of water where fish swim freely feeding on the natural productivity and are eventually caught by capture fisheries that employ different fishing gear (such as gill nets or other types). Characteristics of this system include its low productivity per water surface area (productivity may vary between 35 to 100 kg/ha/year) as well as the difficulty to standardize size and colour of the final product due to their dependence on the natural productivity. Extensive cultivation of trout is mainly carried out by associations and community enterprises (generally, these enterprises have low efficiency and flexibility; therefore they are not very competitive and are slow in reacting to market changes) generally located in rather isolated sites. This is a serious drawback since roads tend to be in very bad conditions, particularly throughout the raining seasons when roads are shut off.

    Semi intensive production is practiced in floating cages whose structures are inexpensive and MAYA be transported easily. The use of cages allows increased stocking densities ranging from 5 kg/m3 to 15 kg/m3 as long as water quality is maintained in optimum conditions.

    Finally, trout culture under intensive systems has allowed bettering techniques based on the adaptation of sophisticated systems to local conditions rendering them more accessible to fish farmers. This system is usually practiced either in concrete tanks or floating cages where stocking densities reach 20 kg/m3 and 14 kg/m3, respectively.

    Aquaculture of Amazonian fish
    Infrastructure for Amazon fish culture comprises mainly ponds. The most simple and inexpensive ponds are those reservoirs formed by damming surface waterways such as creeks, rain-off drainages, springs, etc., allowing to impound water in a land depression. Though their advantage is the low cost of construction, they are difficult to manage due to their irregular shape (these ponds adopt the shape and size of natural land depressions). They are quite susceptible to overflowing due to eventual unforeseen storm run-offs that may even cause the destruction of the entire water works. These type of impoundments are abundant particularly in the Selva Baja (Loreto, Ucayali).

    Derivation ponds are another type of infrastructure used for Amazonian fish culture, which are supplied from a nearby source (river, lake, dam) through a water channel. Although their construction cost is higher, their ease of management compensates their cost over time. They also have the advantage that fish farmers may profit from the use irrigation water traditionally of exclusive use for agriculture; such is the case of the San Martin region where good results have been achieved.

    The rectangular shape of ponds is recommended as it facilitates sampling and harvesting operations. With regards to dimensions, these may vary according to local topography, water availability, the species to be cultured, the culture phase and other considerations. With very small ponds, relative costs are higher due to their comparatively larger and longer pond embankments. However, large ponds are difficult to operate and manage, unless mechanical equipment for feeding and harvesting are available.

    Considering the overall conditions of the Peruvian Amazonian Region, the optimum dimensions of ponds range from 0.2 to 0.5 ha; however, this does not mean that bigger or smaller ponds may be inadequate. Stocking densities are generally 1fish/m2.

    Culture of tilapia
    In Peru, pond cultivation is the most frequently used tilapia production system, although cage and tank culture are gaining more acceptance.

    Rustic ponds are excavated in land and are equipped with independent filling and drainage structures. Wherever possible, filling and draining is by gravity to minimize costs (no energy is needed) and to simplify the system operation.

    On-growth is carried out in earthen ponds with recommended dimensions larger than 0.5 ha (occasionally ponds are lined to prevent leakage). After the conclusion of the production cycle, ponds must undergo maintenance, which in most cases includes bottom ploughing to improve its quality. In the specific case of ponds destined for reproduction, additional considerations must be observed such as the type and/or quality of bottom materials (soft bottoms (sandy) are preferred to facilitate nest excavation).

    Cages require less capital investment in comparison with ponds (Alceste, 2001). These productive units are easy to handle, imply low harvesting costs and allow certain ease to treat the culture organisms in case of disease or parasite detection. The main advantage of cages is that rivers and warm water impoundments or reservoirs may be utilized for the cultivation of fish, which due to their nature, dimensions, and characteristics could not otherwise be used unless the watercourse is modified. Brazil is the largest cage culture producer throughout Latin America.

    The cage size depends on the type of culture practiced. Cages for breeding and fingerling production tend to be small both to facilitate handling and to have access to fish individually. For on-growth, volume of cages may vary from 6 to 20 m3 when production is carried out with simple technology, while for industrial high-technology production, the volume of cages range form 50 to 100 m3.
    Sector performance
    Aquaculture production during 2003 reached 13 292.73 tonnes out of which 3 279.86 (24.67 percent) came from continental waters and 10 012.87 (75.33 percent) from marine or brackish waters. In continental waters, culture of two introduced species is predominant: trout (91.32 percent) and tilapia (3.71 percent), followed by gamitana or cachama (2.62 percent) and pacu (1.15 percent) as well as other species, the majority of them of Amazonian origin, but whose production level is insignificant. On the other hand, marine culture is mainly concentrated in two species: Argopecten purpuratus (73.02 percent), Litopenaeus vannamei (26.88 percent) and, in a much smaller proportion, Crassostrea gigas (0.10 percent). Almost the entirety of cultivated marine species is marketed in either frozen or fresh presentations; no processing (salt-pressed or cured, salted or smoked) is carried out (PRODUCE, Statistic Yearbook 2002. Although it is well known that most of the aquatic production is represented by fan shell and freshwater shrimp, for export in frozen presentations, this is not shown in official statistic sources. Probably due to producers information or difficulties to survey data, sometimes information is not consistent between different official sources such as the Ministry of Production (PRODUCE), Commission for Export Promotion (PROMPEX) and the National Aquaculture Direction, or even FAO).

    Table 3. Estimated aquaculture production by species, 2003.
    Aquaculture production by species (2003)
    A. Continental origin 3 279.86 24.67
    Trout 2 995.22 91.32
    Tilapia 121.64 3.71
    Gamitana or cachama 85.77 2.62
    Pacu 37.64 1.15
    Streaked prochilod 9.30 0.28
    Netted Prochilod or boquichico 7.34 0.22
    Giant Malaysian prawn 6.67 0.20
    Pacotana 5.60 0.17
    Carp 5.08 0.15
    Other* 5.59 0.17
    B. Marine origin 10 012.87 75.33
    Scallop 7 311.51 73.02
    Shrimp 2 691.32 26.88
    Pacific oyster 9.79 0.10
    Other 0.25 0.00
    TOTAL (A+B) 13 292.73 100.00

    (*) Includes: mullet, carachama, silverside and river prawns.
    Source: PRODUCE, Statistic Yearbook 2003.

    It should be noted that in 2002 total landings of hydro biological resources of continental origin reached 33.197 tonnes, of which 8.3 percent was captured in the Andean region; 81.97 percent was captured in the Amazonian region; and the remaining 9.73 percent was produced through aquaculture. The following table shows the total landings of continental origin for the most representative species.

    Trout is the main species cultured in continental waters. Between 1993-2003, accumulated production of trout reached 18 100 tonnes (89.23 percent of the total aquaculture production in continental waters during that period); the cultivation of trout has shown a growth trend through the years. Other species with relative importance with regards to production volumes are tilapia (5.52 percent) and Amazonian species: gamitana or cachama, pacu and netted prochilod or boquichico (2.66 percent).

    Between years 1990-2003 the main marine species cultured were shrimp, with a total production of 49 020 tonnes (63.24 percent of total marine aquaculture production), and scallops, totalling 28 240 tonnes (36.43 percent); while other species such as macro-algae and Pacific oysters reached insignificant volumes. Nevertheless, during the last four years, the sea scallop has become the most important marine aquaculture species, representing 75.74 percent of total production volume, with a significant growth trend. Conversely, the proportion of cultured shrimp has decreased to about 24 percent; its recovery from the White Spot Viral Syndrome disease in 1999 has been slow.

    The graph below shows total aquaculture production in Peru according to FAO statistics:

    Market and trade
    In 2002, the export value of hydro-biologic products from aquaculture reached US$14.87 million, from sales of 2 296.11 tonnes to the following markets: United States of America (52 percent), Europe (43 percent) and Asia (5 percent).

    Income from aquaculture exports to that continent was US$6.45 millions, representing 43.9 percent of total export value; while European markets represented 52.9 percent (US$7.87 millions) although the volume of exported products was less. The largest export volume is constituted by shrimp (58 percent) followed by scallop (26 percent) and trout (16 percent).

    Among the countries that pose major demand for Peruvian aquatic products is France, which in 2002 represented 81.42 percent of the income derived from exports to Europe (US$6.40 millions), followed by Spain with 7.36 percent; the United States represents 43.93 percent of exports to the Americas (US$5.92 millions); finally, in Asia the major client is Taiwan, which represents 85.85 percent of exports to that continent (US$0.47 millions).

    Finally, the increase of scallops to 1 730 tonnes (52.8 percent of total exported volume) is almost double the exported volume of the former year. However, income derived from those exports represented only US$8.97 million; this indicates that despite the increase in export volumes, prices decreased significantly at destination markets, down to about 2002 levels.
    In a similar way, exports of shrimp increased (35.87 percent), whose FOB export value has been similar to that of sea scallops. the export volumes of trout have experienced a slight increase in market prices too (the ratio US$/ton increased by 6.26 percent).
    Contribution to the economy
    Official information on this subject matter is not available since aquaculture production data is consolidated with capture fisheries landings for purposes of their contribution to the Gross Domestic Product. However it is possible to state that contribution of aquaculture to the national economy is still far from that of fisheries; its participation is as yet not very relevant.
    Promotion and management of the sector
    The institutional framework
    The Law of Promotion and Development of Aquaculture (LPDA) and its Regulation (Law 27460, Published 26 May 2001) are the main regulations for the sector and their objective is to provide guidance in regulation and promotion of the activity. There are other specific regulations such as the Regulation for Inspection and Procedure Sanctions, as well as the Sanitation Regulations. Other important laws are the Law of Investment Promotion for the Amazonian Region and the Law of Natural Protected Areas.

    In July 2002, the Organic Law was promulgated, whereby the structure and competencies of institutions and ministries were modified. Two Ministries were fused (Fisheries and Industries) into one, named Ministry of Production (PRODUCE).

    Institutional competencies
    A series of public institutions have competencies in the aquatic sector, both in regulations as much as in management administration. A group of institutions is formed by those related to policy regulation of the aquatic activity; the higher ranked institutions being the Ministry of Production through its Vice-ministry of Fisheries. The dependency directly in charge of this activity is the National Aquaculture Directorate (DNA).

    Ministry of Production.
    PRODUCE formulates, approves, develops and supervises national policies applicable to extractive, productive and transformation activities within the industrial and fisheries sectors, promoting competitiveness and increased production, as well as the rational use of resources and environmental protection.

    Vice-ministry of Fisheries
    Formulates, develops and conducts policies of the fisheries sub-sector, including the extraction, production, transformation and cultivation of marine and continental water resources, ensuring the rational use of natural resources and the preservation of the environment.

    National Aquaculture Directorate (DNA)
    The DNA has technical, regulation and promotion competencies; it is in charge of proposing, implementing and supervising the policies in the aquaculture sub-sector, watching over the rational use of natural resources and environmental preservation. The organization is headed by a National Director, under the Fisheries Vice-minister. The DNA has attributions as technical secretariat to the National Aquaculture Commission; which is the inter-sector coordination body related to aquaculture activities and is also in charge of coordinating the participation of the public and private sectors in the promotion of the sustainable development of aquaculture.

    Other institutions with participation in activities within the aquaculture sector are the Decentralized Public Organizations (OPD), which include the Peruvian Maritime Institute (IMARPE), the Technological Fisheries Institute (ITP), the National Fund for Fisheries Development (FONDEPES), and the Paita Training Centre (CEP Paita). The Peruvian Amazonian Research Institute (IIAP), should also be mentioned.

    A second group of institutions comprises public entities having important participation in sector management with which close coordination is required. Among the most relevant are the Health Ministry, (DIGESA); the Defence Ministry (through the Directorate of Headquarter Captainship and Coast Guard; the Ministry of Agriculture (and its National Institute of Natural Resources –INRENA- and the Water Directorate), and the Regional Governments.

    A third group of public institutions are those with responsibilities in the development of aquaculture though not directly related to management issues. For example the Ministry of Energy and Mining (MEM) has competencies in water pollution control; the Commission for the Promotion of Exports (PROMPEX) supports aquaculture in international markets. Undoubtedly, inter-sector coordination is of great importance too.
    The governing regulations
    The most relevant regulations bearing on aquaculture are presented in the following table:

    Table 4. Relevant regulations governing aquaculture.
    Name Approval Publication
    General Fisheries Law Law Decree Nº 25.977 22.12.1992 (*)
    Regulations of the General Fisheries Law DS Nº 012-2001-PE 14.03.01
    Guidelines of Fisheries Policy RM Nº 646-97-PE 24.10.97 (*)
    Law for Promotion and Development of Aquaculture Ley Nº 27.460 26.05.01
    Regulations of the Law of Promotion and Development of Aquaculture DS Nº 030-2001-PE 12.07.01
    Regulations of Inspection and Sanctioning Procedures to Violations in Fisheries and Aquaculture DS Nº 008-2002-PE 03.07.02
    Sanitary Norm for Aquaculture and Fisheries DS Nº 040-2001-PE 17.12.01
    Regulations of Inspection and Surveillance of Fisheries and Aquaculture RM Nº 142-2001-PE 26.04.01
    Regulations of Administration and Management of Special Leases for the Development of Marine Aquaculture of Benthonic Species in the National Reserve of Paracas DS Nº 023-2001-PE 03.06.01

    Support Issues created by the Law for Promotion and Development of Aquaculture (LPDA).
    The LPDA created a series of support issues allowing the development of aquaculture; for example the creation of the Aquatic Research Fund (FIA) and the National Aquaculture Information Network. Another group of tools encompassed by the LPDA are those that refer to the promotion of the activity among which tributary instruments are privileged. Modifications to the Income Tax derive from these regulations, as do reductions to rates and charges; but no other promotion or incentive measures are included.

    Scheme for access to aquaculture

    An important characteristic of the Law and its Regulation is their ordaining character. In this respect, adequate areas for aquaculture may be designated in marine or continental environments, including reservoirs, dams, or channels, as long as there is no interference with other traditional activities in the region. Accordingly, the law establishes two modalities for access to aquaculture: concessions and authorizations. The former are assigned for development of aquaculture in public lands, bottoms or continental and marine waters, while authorizations are given for development of aquaculture on privately owned lands, for research activities (research should focus on development and adaptation of new culture technologies or for the betterment of existing technologies, these might be undertaken by individuals or groups, private or public, national or international), stocking or restocking (stocking or re-stocking activities with conservation objectives may be carried out either by individuals or by companies, public or private).

    Technical reports for the designation of appropriate marine areas for aquaculture are carried out by PRODUCE based upon results of technical evaluations and selection made by renowned institutions duly selected, for example the Regional Production Directions –DIREPROS, the Directorate of Headquarter Captainship and Coast Guard ascribed to the Ministry of Defence (DICAPI), and the Ministry of Agriculture (MINAG).

    Areas are not restricted to those included in the National Aquaculture Cadastre, but may also include those deemed appropriate by the applicant, previously endorsed by the National Aquaculture Directorate (DNA). These areas must obtain a sanitary certificate given by DIGESA, as well as an administrative permit granted by DICAPI, in the case of marine concessions.

    Aquatic concessions based on the National Aquaculture Cadastre, are granted by PRODUCE, through public solicitation or contest. However, when an applicant requests an aquatic concession, he must previously subscribe an Agreement on Natural Preservation, Investment and Aquatic Production with DNA or with the concerning Regional Production Directorate. This contract includes the terms of reference related to technological and financial issues.

    The duration of concessions is determined by the characteristics of the aquaculture venture being launched and the envisaged volume of production, as stated in the contract. Concessions are renewable upon termination and applicable exclusively to the surface area actually under production.

    Holders of concessions or authorizations for the practice of aquaculture on public lands and continental waters must pay an Aquaculture Rights levy; whilst aquaculture carried out in the sea and in navigation rivers and lakes are levied an annual Concession Right as established by DICAPI. The Ministry of Agriculture (MINAG) sets the rates of Aquaculture Rights to be paid for aquaculture or fish farming activities.

    Reproduction and breeding may be carried out either in the wild or in captivity under controlled conditions as set by the pertaining regulations.

    Access to the practice of aquaculture in Protected Natural Areas (ANP) is dictated by specific regulations. Aquatic activities in such areas must abide by Law 26.834 pertaining to Protected Natural Areas and its corresponding Regulations.

    In marine areas, classified as Protected Natural Areas but not declared as untouchable, special concessions may be granted for development of aquaculture activities, as well as authorizations for research, stocking and/or re-stocking activities. For continental Protected Natural Areas, PRODUCE may grant concessions to rural or Indian communities for the implementation of aquaculture activities, as well as to duly registered organisations constituted by artisanal fishermen.

    For more information on aquaculture legislation in Peru please click on the following link:
    National Aquaculture Legislation Overview - Peru (in Spanish)
    Applied research, education and training
    Research priorities
    The Peruvian Institute of the Sea (IMARPE), has the responsibility for conducting scientific and technological research on marine and freshwater living aquatic resources in order to provide trustful and timely information to government authorities and sector agents, for decision making purposes in relation to fisheries regulations and environmental preservation as well as on production and marketing issues.

    IMARPE is in charge of providing support and to execute scientific and technological research programmes in marine and continental waters for the optimisation of aquaculture at the national level.

    State and private universities also undertake research on aquaculture but according to their own priorities and goals.

    Participative research
    The State is currently establishing pertinent coordination measures with the private sector in order to create the synergy that may maximize the efforts by both sectors. The National Aquaculture Commission is the official panel for the discussion of aquaculture issues and for the exchange of results and experiences related to Peruvian aquaculture.

    Table 5: Professional education on aquaculture
    Univ. Nacional de Tumbes Fisheries Engineer
    Univ. Nacional de Piura Fisheries Engineer
    Univ. Nacional de Trujillo Fisheries Biologist
    Univ. Nacional del Santa Aquaculture Biologist
    Univ. Nacional Faustino Sánchez Carrión Fisheries Engineer
    Univ. Nacional Federico Villarreal Aquaculture Engineer
    Univ. Nacional Agraria La Molina Fisheries Engineer
    Univ. Privada Ricardo Palma Biologist
    Univ. Nacional San Luis Gonzaga Fisheries Engineer
    Univ. Jorge Basadre Fisheries Engineer
    Univ. Nacional Mayor de San Marcos MasterS Degree in Aquatic Resources with major in Aquaculture
    Univ. Nacional Federico Villarreal Masters Degree in Aquaculture.
    Univ. Nacional San Luis Gonzaga Master Degree in Marine Sciences with major in Aquaculture
    Trends, issues and development
    Shrimp aquaculture
    Total surface area for marine shrimp culture increased uninterruptedly since the end of the 1970s until 1988 when the “El Niño” affected and destroyed many farms. The following year, the occurrence of the “White Spot Disease Syndrome” afflicted the industry even further; situation which only started to revert as of year 2001.

    Prior to the incidence of the White Spot Syndrome Viral disease, the shrimp farming enterprises had adopted semi intensive culture systems, ranging in size from 20 to 200 ha. However, since 2000 there has been a trend towards adopting intensive culture practices which require vast investment. Under intensive aquaculture practices, farm size tends to become irrelevant; instead, emphasis is set on yields per surface area, per cycle or per year; as well as on feed conversion efficiency and other raw materials, and in the control of water quality. The yields of intensive culture systems are ten times superior to those of the traditionally employed semi-intensive cultures (an intensive shrimp culture farm of 10 ha, may achieve the same production as a traditional (semi-intensive) farm of 100 or 200 ha); however their importance lies in the fact that high-temperature systems and greater bio-security, reduce the probability of the incidence of epidemics, production levels becoming more.

    Towards 1997 the marine shrimp farming industry was formed by 50 companies; in 2001 only 15 enterprises had survived the consequences of the fall in production caused by the “White Spot Viral Syndrome disease”.

    The intensification of shrimp aquaculture focused in reducing the size of ponds, on the treatment of supply water, pond covering with “liners”, use of aerators, and the implementation of pro biotic micro organisms and bio enhancers (pro-biotics and bio-enhancers were introduced two years ago in a limited way. At present, these products are offered by external suppliers, and even “in situ” production is frequent. Their efficiency and availability become critical as culture intensification increases) adopting technology previously standardized in other countries, whose yields range from 5 to 10 ton/ha. It should be mentioned that this technology was substantially improved with the use of coverings, similar to “green houses”, consolidating yields ranging from 10 to 15 ton/ha per each cycle with duration of just over 3 months (reduction of culture period to 100 days, allows three cycles per year, increasing production per surface area).

    As mentioned above, both culture systems must be complemented with the local production of improved seed, gradually substituting it by genetically selected seed. Therefore there is an urgent need to recuperate or build new breeding and larval rearing hatcheries, that may include maturation, domestication and genetic selection facilities. At present there are no facilities of this kind.

    The establishment of control regulations for the disposal of effluents is urgently required in order not to affect the environment or other aquaculture enterprises. The former involves treating the discharge waters, water recycling, and the integration of shrimp cultures to agro industrial operations (there is such an experience in Piura, freshwater cultures) (this issue is more complex in semi intensive cultures: since the growth of the industry was not properly planned, it becomes very difficult to reorganize discharge channels and which constitutes a very difficult challenge).

    Scallop aquaculture
    Culture of fan shell –scallop- in Peru was started in 1990 by only two companies on a surface area of 271 ha; by 2003, 44 enterprises (small and large) have undertaken this culture occupying 2 719.75 ha under concession.

    Although a wide variety of problems have been faced by producers in the past decades, a vast potential for the cultivation of scallops prevails today thanks to the favourable conditions of the Peruvian coastline: high natural sea productivity and oceanographic conditions (primarily temperature), allowing the organisms to reach commercial sizes or 5 to 8 cm in a brief period of time.

    Trout culture
    It is envisaged that trout culture may soon reach a promising production level due to the introduction of a series of promotional regulations. With regards to income taxes, the activity has been granted a rate of only 15 percent (other activities have a taxation rate of 30 percent) established by Law 23.407; in the case of rainforest and borderline zones this rate is reduced to 10 percent as established by Law 27.158. Workers involved in aquaculture are exempted of the Extraordinary Tax for Solidarity (2 percent) and fall under the labour and social security (4 percent) regulations applicable to the agriculture sector.

    As a means of supporting the drug fighting programme by Andean nations, European nations apply the Andean General Preferential System since 1990 which is a “zero tariff” system allowing all products to enter the European Union free of tariffs.

    Through the Regional and Local Directorates, the State manages regulations on water bodies and performs the following tasks: keeps records of trout produced under extensive systems with the objective of establishing fishing zones and seasons; verifies the identity of fish farmers; ensures that fishing gears comply with established rules (mesh size of nets, number of hooks, etc.); grants fishing licences, oversees fishing practices; enforces all technical and sanitary regulations; and monitors the level of resource exploitation.

    Culture of native Amazon species
    The Peruvian Amazonian region has adequate conditions for native species fish culture, oriented to a sustainable economic activity.

    Fish farming constitutes an alternative for fish production and food security by diminishing pressure over natural resources, particularly over species such as cachama or gamitana, paiche and pacu, which at present show signs of over exploitation, mainly in the vicinity of the larger towns. However, the development of aquaculture at a larger scale needs to overcome old and new limitations derived from the rural conditions in which it is practiced. Future efforts should be directed towards developing products that meet competitive standards in order to gain access to foreign markets.

    Tilapia culture
    The cultivation of tilapia in Peru has widely spread in the high rainforest, particularly in the Department of San Martin. On the northern coast, some fish farming initiatives are being undertaken linked to the utilization of dams and reservoirs of the irrigation project of Chira-Piura and San Lorenzo. One of these initiatives is being carried out by FONDEPES in the reservoir of Poechos, where floating cages were used. Other recent actions include the promotion of tilapia culture in the Department of Piura, where the American Quality company has made an important investment.

    In the high rainforest of Peru, mainly in the region of San Martin, tilapia has been well accepted among local consumers. In recent years, tilapia has also been commercialized in the Lima markets and is distributed under a variety of presentations in the main supermarkets of the capital city. For example, in supermarkets such as Santa Isabel, the final price of fresh filets (of the brand “Vita Fish”) is US$5/kg; while the whole fish (the “Piscis” brand blue tilapia) is sold at a price of US$3/kg (average whole fish weight of 600 gr) and at a price of US$2.5/kg (for the smaller fish weighing 300 to 350 gr.). These prices seem attractive for exports, even though international markets have not yet been assessed to determine commercial strategies for a rapid expansion, as has been achieved by Brazil, Mexico and Colombia.
    Alceste, Cabrera, Jory. 2000 . Mercado y comercialización de la tilapia en los Estados Unidos de América. Panorama Acuícola May/Jun 2000.
    Alceste, Illingworth, Jory. 2001 . Tilapia Farming industry in Ecuador. Aquaculture Magazine May/Jun 2001.
    Alceste, Jory. 2003 . Market segmentation. The base for development of new products. Aquaculture Magazine Jul/Aug 2003.
    Alceste, Jory, Kodaira. 2001 . Adding value to tilapia: the base for the development of new products. Aquaculture Magazine Nov/Dec 2001.
    Aquaculture Magazine. 2003 . World aquaculture outlook 2003. Aquaculture magazine Buyer's guide 2003. pp. 6-16.
    Azabache, L.; P.B. Bayley; H. Guerra; G. Hanek; D. Levieil; V. Montreuil; A. Nájar; Pazos; R. Shulz y M. Villacorta. 1982 . La Pesquería en la Amazonía Peruana: Presente y Futuro. Hanek, G. (ed.). FAO, Documento de Campo 2, 86 pp.
    Berger, C. 1997 . El cultivo del camarón en el Perú. Panorama Acuícola Vol 2, N° 6 Sept. 1997.
    Berger, C. 2003 . Libro de Oro de la Pesca en el Perú. Capítulo de Acuicultura. Lima, Abril 2003.
    Browdy, C.L. y D.E. Jory. 2002 . The New Wave: Proceedings of the special session on sustainable shrimp farming. World Aquaculture Society. USA.
    Escobar, J. Mejores prácticas y estrategias para promocionar la creación de empleo rural no agrícola, en el desarrollo rural de América Latina: El caso peruano: Proyecto PARA-Huancayo, Procesamiento de Trucha. GRADE, Lima, sin fecha.
    FAO, Departamento de Pesca. 2004 . El estado mundial de la pesca y la acuicultura Roma, FAO. 2004. 168p.  online version
    INSTITUTO DEL MAR DEL PERÚ (IMARPE). Plan Estratégico para el Desarrollo del Sector Pesquero en el Perú. Componente: Acuicultura. Dirección de Investigaciones en Acuicultura, Gestión Costera y Aguas Continentales.
    MINISTERIO DE LA PRODUCCIÓN (PRODUCE). 2003 . Anuario Estadístico 2002. Oficina General de Tecnología de la Información y Estadística.
    PROMPEX. 2002 . Informe anual: Desenvolvimiento de las exportaciones pesqueras 2002. Gerencia de Promoción de Mercados, sector Pesca y Acuicultura. Feb. 2003, 38 pp.
    PROMPEX. 2002 . Algas y peces ornamentales. Panorama mundial. Pesca Responsable N° 4 Marzo 2002. p 7-12.
    Soto, I. 2004 . Diagnóstico del sub sector pesquería: Desarrollo de la acuicultura sostenible de la trucha en Puno. Plan de Acción para desarrollar la acuicultura en Puno y estrategias de trabajo conjunto con otras dependencias del Estado. Versión complementada con los aportes de DAC y DM. Ministerio de la Producción. Viceministerio de Pesquería. Dirección Nacional de Acuicultura. Enero 2004.
    Yepez, V. 2000 . Estado situacional de la maricultura en la costa peruana. Informe Instituto del mar del Perú (IMARPE). Mayo 2000.
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