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J. Mar. Sci. Eng. 2015, 3(2), 240-266; doi:10.3390/jmse3020240

Can the Global Adoption of Genetically Improved Farmed Fish Increase Beyond 10%, and How?

1
Nofima, P.O. Box 210, NO-1431 Ås, Norway
2
WorldFish, Jalan Batu Maung, 11960 Batu Maung, Bayan Lepas, Penang, Malaysia
3
Facultad de Agronomia, Universidad de la República, Avenida Garzon 780, Sayago 12900 Montevideo, Uruguay
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Academic Editor: Dean Jerry
Received: 19 April 2015 / Accepted: 11 May 2015 / Published: 19 May 2015
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Genetic Breeding Technology and Its Application in Marine Aquaculture)
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Abstract

The annual production from global aquaculture has increased rapidly from 2.6 million tons or 3.9% of the total supply of fish, shellfish and mollusks in 1970, to 66.7 million tons or 42.2% in 2012, while capture fisheries have more or less leveled out at about 90 million tons per year since the turn of the century. Consequently, the future seafood supply is likely to depend on a further increase of aquaculture production. Unlike terrestrial animal farming, less than 10% of the aquaculture production comes from domesticated and selectively bred farm stocks. This situation has substantial consequences in terms of poorer resource efficiency, poorer product quality and poorer animal welfare. The history of biological and technical challenges when establishing selective breeding programs for aquaculture is discussed, and it is concluded that most aquaculture species may now be domesticated and improved by selection. However, the adoption of selective breeding in aquaculture is progressing slowly. This paper reports on a study carried out in 2012 to identify key issues to address in promoting the development of genetically improved aquaculture stocks. The study involved semi structured interviews of 34 respondents from different sectors of the aquaculture society in East and Southeast Asia, where 76% of the global aquaculture production is located. Based on the interviews and literature review, three key factors are identified: (i) long-term public commitment is often needed for financial support of the breeding nucleus operation (at least during the first five to ten generations of selection); (ii) training at all levels (from government officers and university staff to breeding nucleus and hatchery operators, as well as farmers); and (iii) development of appropriate business models for benefit sharing between the breeding, multiplier and grow-out operators (whether being public, cooperative or private operations). The public support should be invested in efforts of selective breeding on the most important and highest volume species, which may not be a priority for investment by private breeders due to, for instance, long generation intervals and delays in return to investment. View Full-Text
Keywords: aquaculture; breeding programs; selection; business models; technology adoption; Asia aquaculture; breeding programs; selection; business models; technology adoption; Asia
This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited. (CC BY 4.0).

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MDPI and ACS Style

Olesen, I.; Bentsen, H.B.; Phillips, M.; Ponzoni, R.W. Can the Global Adoption of Genetically Improved Farmed Fish Increase Beyond 10%, and How? J. Mar. Sci. Eng. 2015, 3, 240-266.

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