How can one help fishermen by introducing aquaculture in their profession?

How can one help fishermen by introducing aquaculture in their profession? The best example is brazil. This is the case study.

How can one help fishermen by introducing aquaculture in their profession?
How can one help fishermen by introducing aquaculture in their profession?

fishing and aquaculture

Brazil has all the favorable conditions for fishing and aquaculture, as it has a coastline of 8,500 km and 12% of the fresh water available on the planet. However, it is still necessary to overcome barriers and invest more and more in knowledge and research so that the country stops being an importer and becomes an exporter of fish, becoming an aquaculture power.

In 2009, the Ministry of Fisheries and Aquaculture (MPA) was created by Law 11,958. But the initial milestone took place in 2003 with the enactment of the Provisional Measure (now Law 10,683) that created the Special Secretariat for Aquaculture and Fisheries (SEAP/PR), the body responsible for promoting and developing policies aimed at the fishing sector.

One month after the creation of the MPA, with the aim of reinforcing the promotion of fisheries and aquaculture production in Brazil, Embrapa Pesca e Aquicultura was born, located in Palmas (TO). One of the missions of the new research center is to provide technological solutions for the sustainability and competitiveness of aquaculture and fisheries, for the benefit of Brazilian society. A way to consolidate and further strengthen the work that was already being done by other Embrapa units, other research institutions and universities, as well as by the private sector.

fishing and aquaculture

Fishing is based on the removal of fishery resources from the natural environment. Aquaculture is based on the cultivation of aquatic organisms, usually in a confined and controlled space. The big difference between the two activities is that the first, as it is extractive, does not meet the premises of a competitive market. Aquaculture, on the other hand, allows for more homogeneous products, traceability throughout the chain and other advantages that contribute to food safety, in the sense of generating quality food, with planning and regularity.

According to the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO), aquaculture is the fastest agricultural activity in terms of production results and one of the few capable of easily responding to population growth, which can contribute to the fight against hunger. all around the world.

Current situation

According to MPA data, between 2007 and 2010, aquaculture production of exotic species represented 65% of the total produced by Brazilian fish farming. This predominance is due to the fact that these species, such as tilapia, already have a structured production chain and vast technological development, thus resulting in lower production costs, supply of quality fish and lower prices.

However, Brazil has great productive potential of native species, since it presents a great diversity. In the Brazilian hydrographic basins, 52 native species stand out, such as: tambaqui, pacu, mantrixã, surubins, cachara, among others. Few of them have fully developed and consolidated production technology for the different stages of cultivation. The arapaima, for example, considered a species of high value, still has low-scale production, making the production and marketing of fish difficult.

search results

Some research results in the area of ​​aquaculture can already be observed within the scope of the Aquabrasil project, led by Embrapa Pantanal and completed in 2012. The project’s main objective was to develop technical-scientific knowledge, especially with regard to genetic improvement for the promotion of sustainable aquaculture. The selected species were white shrimp, GIFT tilapia, tambaqui and surubim cachara.

Through genetic improvement, it was possible to increase the growth rate of GIFT tilapia by 28%, with a reduction of 21 days of cultivation time in cage systems. Sixty-two families were formed, and the first generation of the breeding program for part of the sires has already been evaluated and made available to the project’s private partners.

Regarding surubim, 72 families were formed and the first improved fingerlings should be obtained in 2014. In 2012, the first improved lineage of white shrimp was obtained. As for tambaqui, a lot of information has already been made available in order to help factories to produce more efficient rations for its cultivation.

All knowledge generated is disseminated to producers, assistance and rural extension technicians, as well as society in general. The objective is to overcome difficulties and challenges, strengthen the sector and make it more competitive.

research challenge

Brazil has native aquaculture species with great productive and economic potential, however, none of them, yet, has scientific and technological information that allow the structuring of the production chain. Hence arises the great challenge of national research: to generate knowledge and technology for the sector.

This way you can help fishermen by introducing aquaculture in their profession

In this sense, the focus of research today is in the area of ​​reproduction and genetic improvement of fish, nutrition and feeding of aquaculture species with the production of more sustainable rations that minimize the environmental impact, conservation and management of fisheries resources, health of aquaculture species, processing fish agro-industrial, aquaculture production systems, treatment and reuse of effluents and sustainable development of artisanal continental fisheries. The idea is for Brazilian aquaculture to be equal to agriculture in terms of production.

Another great challenge is to develop sustainable aquaculture, since the activity demands a lot of natural resources such as water, energy and soil. Therefore, it is necessary to make the proper management and rationalization of them, that is, to produce profitably, with the conservation of natural resources and the promotion of social development. The activity is considered by the National Council for the Environment (Conama) as being of low impact and, therefore, simplifies environmental licensing for enterprises in the field.

One of the main obstacles in the area today is related to health and biosafety issues. There is still a difficulty in an early diagnosis of diseases, although studies and actions in this direction are already underway, such as the development of methodologies for monitoring and evaluating the quality of water and fish, as well as production management techniques.

Another bottleneck in the sector is the technological processing of the production chain of native fish, as already mentioned. This makes producers sell their fish without adding value. In Brazil, in general, fish processing is limited to the precarious cooling or freezing of the species and incipient filleting.

There are many challenges. But public research, in partnership with universities and private initiatives, is heading towards the consolidation of the sector, in which technological advances and innovation, as happened with agriculture, will transform Brazil into one of the greatest aquaculture powers.