World Aquaculture Society Meetings

Add To Calendar 26/02/2016 10:30:0026/02/2016 10:50:00America/ChicagoAquaculture 2016THE BUSINESS CASE FOR ENVIRONMENTALLY SUSTAINABLE AQUACULTURE PRODUCTION BurgundyThe World Aquaculture Societyjohnc@was.orgfalseanrl65yqlzh3g1q0dme13067DD/MM/YYYY


Carole R. Engle, Ph.D.
 Engle-Stone Aquatic$ LLC

Sustainable aquaculture production is widely recognized today as the end goal of efforts designed to lead to additional growth and expansion of aquaculture worldwide.  While "sustainable" continues to be a somewhat vague term, many now understand that, for aquaculture businesses to be sustained, economic trade-offs must be included in the overall assessment of sustainable aquaculture production.  There is a growing body of literature that examines the economic trade-offs of a variety of production and marketing practices recommended to enhance sustainability from an environmental management perspective.  However, most of these studies compare the costs with and without adoption of one or more specific farm changes expected to reduce environmental impacts.  There is little research that has looked at the broader view of whether those production practices that reduce environmental impacts might also result in improved economic performance, or conversely whether practices that improve economic performance may also result in reduced environmental impact of aquaculture businesses.

A recent study to examine these questions was undertaken.  Surveys were conducted of shrimp farms in Thailand and Vietnam to collect data on commonly used indicators of environmental performance (i.e. feed conversion ratio as measure of feed efficiency, waste, and water pollution, yield as a measure of efficiency of land use and habitat conversion, survival as a measure of health management, water and energy use, etc.) as well as fixed and variable inputs used in shrimp production.  

An economic analysis was developed to compare cost and profitability among groups of farms with similar management strategies.  Per-unit costs of production for each group were cross tabulated against the calculated measures of environmental performance.  The study highlighted the comparative economic importance of key indicators of environmental performance of shrimp farms.

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