The recent GOAL 2011 conference in Santiago, Chile, confirmed the pressing need for aquaculture to increase seafood production and identified key challenges such expansion will face.
Now available free online see the insights of the expert speakers who addressed the approaching growth. This web page includes links to copies of individual GOAL presentations and video footage that expresses key points.
"How can we, as an industry, work together to responsibly increase aquaculture production, despite rising population and diminishing resources?" Global Aquaculture Alliance Executive Director Wally Stevens asked. "GOAL 2011 was designed to help us begin establishing strategies that will carry aquaculture forward by embracing the opportunities and proactively answering the challenges that await."
The Global Outlook for Aquaculture Leadership (GOAL) event was organized by the Global Aquaculture Alliance (GAA) with assistance from co-hosts the Undersecretariat for Fisheries of Chile and SalmonChile. Over 350 seafood producers, marketers and service providers attended to discuss key aquaculture production and market trends for a future with much higher seafood demand.
As explained by James Anderson, leader of the World Bank's Global Program on Fisheries and Aquaculture, preliminary findings from the World Bank's Fish to 2030 Project indicated that aquaculture must grow 75 to 85 percent by 2030 to supply the world's growing demand for seafood. At that point, it will provide about 60 percent of the global supply of seafood for human consumption.
For aquaculture to achieve the needed growth, Camanchaca CEO and keynote speaker Ricardo Garcia said, it must address risks related to finances, animal health and the environment, feed ingredients, markets and other factors.
Gorjan Nikolik, an industry analyst at Rabobank International, said investors recognize aquaculture as an exciting growth industry and are cautiously evaluating opportunities. For the highly diverse and relatively young industry, Nikolik and other presenters said, consolidation and integration can lead to greater funding from venture capital, private equity and more mature segments of the agriculture and fisheries sectors.
Effective animal health management will continue to be critical for future development. The Global Aquaculture Alliance has been working with the World Bank, Wageningen University, World Organization for Animal Health and national organizations in several countries to examine lessons learned in dealing with disease outbreaks of several main farmed species. The first phase of the cooperative project evaluated the factors that predisposed the Atlantic salmon-farming industry in Chile to a devastating outbreak of infectious salmon anemia (ISA) and the steps taken to recover from that crisis.
At GOAL 2011, a panel presentation led by Adolfo Alvial, a former technical director for Marine Harvest Chile, explained the high density and limited biosecurity that combined to cause the ISA problems and the greater regulation and zone management that have led to a strong recovery.
Experts projected that sufficient grains and oilseeds will be produced through crop intensification to meet the increasing demand for aquafeeds, but tight supplies are leading to more volatile prices. Innovations in soy and other vegetable proteins and increasing production of rendered animal proteins provide alternatives for fishmeal. Jonathan Shepherd, outgoing director general of the International Fishmeal and Fish Oil Organisation, received GAA's Lifetime Achievement Award in recognition of his efforts in developing the IFFO Responsible Sourcing certification program for fishmeal and fish oil.
John Galiher, CEO of Preferred Freezer Services, spoke on the emergence of China as a huge new market for farmed seafood. Chinese citizens perceive seafood as a healthy food choice, and demand is rising. For seafood marketing to succeed in China, however, it is important to establish local offices and learn the laws and customs.
An array of major retailers considered how their buying practices could help influence the sustainability of aquaculture. Aquaculture certification programs like GAA's Best Aquaculture Practices are becoming mainstream to meet rising market demands for seafood safety and sustainability.