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Activation of Services and Consolidation of the Aquaculture Network of the Americas

Aquaculture has been the fastest growing sector in the region, among those providing livelihoods, contributing to food security and combating poverty. To support the sustainable development of this sector in the countries of Latin America and the Caribbean, a mechanism for inter-governmental cooperation was created: the Aquaculture Network of the Americas (RAA).

The Aquaculture Network of the Americas was created based on a requirement of technical assistance articulated by the government of Brazil, regarding commitments made in the Charter of Guayaquil from June 12, 2009. It was officially created in 2010 under the Charter of Brasilia, Brazil. In 2012 the Convention of the RAA in Nicaragua was signed, in which eleven countries formally expressed their willingness to be part of this network.

The network was further strengthened with the support of the Program for International Cooperation Brazil-FAO. In this program, the project of Activation of Services and Consolidation of the Aquaculture Network of the Americas (RAA) is being carried out, with the aim of supporting the sustainable development of aquaculture in the region and, thus, contributing to combat hunger and poverty in Latin America and the Caribbean.

The project has developed instruments that enable the RAA to act effectively as an independent body. It is developed in coordination with the governments of the region to meet the need for information related to best practices in aquaculture; access to markets; improvement and streamlining of value chains; technological expertise and applied science; institutional strengthening and policy development; as well as to stimulate the inclusion of sectors such as scarce resources, women and indigenous peoples.

With the support of the project, there are currently 15 member countries in the RAA: Argentina, Bolivia, Brazil, Chile, Colombia, Costa Rica, Cuba, Ecuador, Guatemala, Honduras, Nicaragua, Panama, Paraguay and Uruguay.

The project

The project works in the following activities:

  • Institutional Strengthening of the RAA: It is supported through annual meetings of the Ministers of Fisheries and Aquaculture of Latin America and the Caribbean. The objective is to establish commitments through public policies in the countries for the development of Aquaculture of Limited Resources (AREL) as a tool for food security in the context of family farming.
  • Pilot Farms: This model initiative is supported in 7 countries in the region: Antigua and Barbuda, Costa Rica, Colombia, Ecuador, Guatemala and Paraguay, with the goal of strengthening the sustainable production of fish; allowing for the generation of more income and employment, as well as facilitating the development of rural and coastal communities. It has supported a total of eight farms in the construction and / or expansion of ponds, aquaculture management training, and the purchase of equipment and materials, among other activities.
  • Extension course in Aquaculture: Launched in March 2014, the course is promoted with the aim of accurately carrying out the role of the extension worker in aquaculture; based on studies, debates and reflections on the topic.
  • Training: Online courses were carried out during the last two years. One course was about productivity and quality of aquaculture production and another covered the topics of aquaculture management and the manufacturing of products. A total of 120 people received training through the two courses.
  • Groups of International Cooperation: Two groups were created for the exchange of knowledge: Flat Fish and Amazonian Fish.