February 3, 2006
Click here for previous Free News reports in 2006.
In response to an item on the Shrimp List, Julio Estrada commented on the status of shrimp farming in Ecuador.
Around here, I'd say there've been major attitude changes since shrimp prices started heading south in 2000. Most farmers are no longer throwing money at magic solutions that will get them back to the golden days of near-100% rates of return. They are doing what's done in mature industries, tweaking their business to increase production efficiencies, watching costs and improving marketing. They've come to terms with the changed nature of the business. They continue to invest in research and development, but on a more modest (should I say "reasonable"?) scale.
On genetics, there's been progress. Ecuador was late in starting genetic programs, probably because we were blessed with plentiful supplies of wild seed that was more than "good enough".
Farmers' results definitely kept improving during 2005. Certainly there are quite a few semi-intensive farms now operating profitably, but not necessarily by getting huge yields. Some farmers don't even shoot for maximum yields. Instead, they opt for efficient operations and consistent results, meaning less time spent putting out fires, more time spent running the business.
Among the major players, there seems to be a consensus that the industry will go intensive. Shrimping remains highly addictive. It's amazing how few farmers ran away from the industry after the huge price drops in the early 2000s.
Source: The Shrimp List (a mailing list for shrimp farmers, "email@example.com"). Subject: [shrimp] Shrimp industry situation. From: firstname.lastname@example.org. January 23, 2006.
La Niña-Cool It
According to the Associated Press, climate experts have confirmed the start of a new La Niña, a mild cooling of the tropical Pacific Ocean that often coincides with reduced production of shrimp along the Pacific coasts of Colombia, Peru and Ecuador and disrupted weather patterns along the Pacific coast of Central America that result in lower shrimp production. La Niña will probably last through late spring and possibly through the summer, said Edward A. O'Lenic, chief of the Climate Prediction Center at the USA National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration. The center has confirmed jet stream changes and lower-than-normal water temperatures in parts of the Pacific Ocean in the past three months, Mr. O'Lenic said at a meeting of the American Meteorological Society in Atlanta, Georgia, USA.
Sources: 1. The New York Times. National Briefing/Science and Health/La Niña Begins. February 3, 2006. 2. Bob Rosenberry, Shrimp News International, February 3, 2006.
In response to a discussion on the Shrimp List, Burkhart Klein commented on the status of world shrimp farming:
I'd like to add my two cents' worth on the state-of-the-art of shrimp farming technology:
I've become kind of obsessed with the idea of producing and supplying fresh shrimp to consumers in Europe. This can, of course, only be done by using indoor, recirculation systems.
I've designed, built and operated a number of test facilities in the range of a few kilos per week up to a semi-industrial plant with 2,500 m³ of culture tanks and 150 tons of product output per year from a three-step system that included a (verrrry) small processing facility (a Carnitech grader and packing area).
Right now I'm into a project producing some 1,000 tons per year in a country with low labor and energy costs for export into Europe.
Source: The Shrimp List (a mailing list for shrimp farmers, "email@example.com"). AW: [shrimp] Digest Number 2101. From: firstname.lastname@example.org. January 26, 2006.
Wants Money, Has Technology, Will Travel
I am a researcher with more than 20 years of research experience in shrimp endocrinology and reproductive biology. I am currently an Associate Professor at the University of Hong Kong. I have recently developed a technique to induce shrimp maturation in captivity and would like to discuss joint ventures or other means of funding from private organizations. Please email me for a copy of my CV. Information: Siu-Ming Chan, Associate Professor, Department of Zoology, The University of Hong Kong, Hong Kong (phone 852-2299-0864, fax 852-2857-4672, email email@example.com).
Source: AquaNic (The Aquaculture Network Information Center, a gateway to the world's electronic aquaculture resources, http://aquanic.org/index.htm). Shrimp Discussion Group (http://ag.ansc.purdue.edu/discuss/shrimp.htm). Subject: Research Partnership/collaboration (http://www.aquanic.org/discuss/_shrimp/00000ea1.htm). From: Dr. S.M. Chan. January 25, 2006.
Shrimp Head Powder
We are one of the largest producers of farmed shrimp in Andhra Pradesh (Krishna District). We also distribute shrimp feed and manufacture shrimp head powder.
Information: A. Ramakrishna, R.K. Enterprises, Swatantrapuram Koduru, Krishna District, Andhra Pradesh 521325, India (phone 098662-11258, email firstname.lastname@example.org).
Source: The Shrimp List (a mailing list for shrimp farmers, "email@example.com"). Subject: [shrimp] shrimp head powder buyers inf plz. From: firstname.lastname@example.org. January 28, 2006.
Writer Paul Molyneaux
American writer Paul Molyneaux lives in Sonora, Mexico, part of the year. His first book, The Doryman's Reflection: A Fisherman's Life, tells his story of trying to make it as a commercial fisherman. His next book, which will probably be published in late 2006 or early 2007, covers salmon and shrimp farming. Paul will be in Sonora for the next couple of months and would like to visit some shrimp farms and hatcheries in the area. He can be contacted at email@example.com.
Source: Bob Rosenberry, Shrimp News International, Febraury 2, 2006.
New Blue Blood
In March 2005, shrimp farmers imported a strain of specific pathogen free Penaeus stylirostris, commonly called the "Western Blue Shrimp", from Hawaii to reinvigorate the local strain of "stylies" that has been farmed in New Caledonia for thirty generations. The new strain was held in quarantine for five months to assure its disease-free status. The decision to introduce the Hawaiian strain was taken by producers belonging to the Unité de Promotion et de Sélection des Races Aquacoles de Crevettes de Nouvelle-Calédonie (UPRAC-NC), along with researchers from IFREMER, the French government marine research group.
In December 2005, UPRAC-NC hatcheries imported Hawaiian postlarvae so that they could produce their own broodstock, which should be ready by September 2006.
Source: Fish Farming International (http://www.fishfarming.co.uk). Pacific Island Gets New Shrimp Strain. Volume 33, Number 1, Page 16, January 2006.
The Fisheries and Aquaculture Board (FAB) has requested that the government's ban on Penaeus vannamei farming be lifted immediately because experiments have shown that disease-free P. vannamei broodstock can be maintained in captivity.
Source: Seafood.com (an online, subscription-based, fisheries news service). Industry presses Philippines to immediately lift vannamei ban, saying it is not cost competitive. Editor and Publisher, John Sackton (phone 781-861-1441, email firstname.lastname@example.org). January 19, 2006.
Prime Minister Promises to Promote Shirmp Farming
Prime Minister Thaksin Shinawatra has promised to promote shrimp farming at Kor Jor village in Tambon Nom, pledging funds to enlarge existing farms to rival those in Suphan Buri. A source said some of the local residents had already signed contracts to farm shrimp for the CP Group, the country's largest agro-conglomerate.
Source: 1. The Belfast Telegraph (newspaper Northern Ireland). PM doles out riches to rural poor in reality TV stunt (http://www.belfasttelegraph.co.uk/news/story.jsp?story=676334). Jan McGirk. January 19, 2006. 2. Bangkok Post (English language newspaper, Bangkok, Thailand). PM makes fans in At Samat (http://www.bangkokpost.com/News/18Jan2006_news51.php). January 18, 2006.
Wales-Worms to Replace Fish Meal
Port Talbot-based Dragon Baits, Ltd., aims to create 270 ragworm (polychaetes, Nereis virens) ponds on 112 acres in Laugharne. The worms will be used as an ingredient in a new shrimp feed. The company was given planning consent in 2002, but now faces objections from local residents who oppose the project.
Jack Done, chairman of the Llanmiloe Community Association, said, "We are still supporting it, and a lot of people are of that view. The ponds will be a meter high and landscaped. When people look over it, all they will see will be an expanse of water."
But a local group called Friends of the Local Environment has submitted a 283-signature petition that opposes the project. Spokesman John Gilbert said the group has a variety of concerns, including odors. Gilbert said, "It's just not in the right place. ...There is already planning consent for an adjacent farm, and we fail to see how the planners can allow two side by side on the burrows."
Source: BBC News (British Broadcasting Company, government). Fish bait farm splits community (http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/uk_news/wales/south_west/4662836.stm). January 31, 2006.
California-Shrimp News International
I'll be at the World Aquaculture Association Meeting in Las Vegas, Nevada, from February 13-16, 2006. If you are going to be there and have news to report, let me know and I'll take down your story.
I'm departing for Las Vegas on February 8 and will be away until February 18. If you wish to contact me during that period, please use my cell phone number (858-610-2188).
There will be no Free News reports for the next two Fridays; Free News will return on Friday, February 24, 2006.
Source: Bob Rosenberry, Shrimp News International, February 1, 2006.
OceanBoy Farms, a low-salinity, inland shrimp farm in Central Florida, is based on a 1,500-acre spread near LaBelle with a processing plant 25 miles away on the outskirts of Clewiston, a quiet sugar town near Lake Okeechobee. It's the nation's only commercial producer of organic shrimp. According to Carlos Martinez, an aquaculture expert at the University of Florida's Sea Grant marine extension program, "OceanBoy is the biggest, baddest and meanest high-tech aquaculture farm in existence.''
The $55 million, privately held operation grew out of a master's thesis that founder David McMahon wrote a decade ago at the Nova Southeastern University's Oceanographic Center on the feasibility of raising ocean shrimp in fresh water.
Eddy Daniel, vice president of processing, is in charge of the plant, which employs 125 people during the twice-yearly harvests. The shrimp are chill-killed in an icy slush, jet-washed, deheaded by hand and graded. Some are left shell-on; others are peeled and steam-cooked. A conveyor belt carries them through a liquid-nitrogen tunnel that instantly freezes them. Then they're glazed with ice to protect from freezer burn, bagged, boxed and stored overnight in a deep-freeze before shipping to customers around the country and in Japan.
Source: Miami Herald (newspaper, Miami, Florida, USA). Down on the (shrimp) farm: They're organic, planet-friendly and Florida-grown (http://www.miami.com/mld/miamiherald/living/food/13762016.htm). Linda Bladholm. February 2, 2006.
Hawaii-Oceanic Institute-100% Taura Resistant
According to the Oceanic Institute's fiscal year 2005 annual report, it is now common to find shrimp hatcheries that produce families that exhibit up to 100% resistance to the Taura virus (A serotype).
Information: Anthony C. Ostrowski, Ph.D., Director, U.S. Marine Shrimp Farming Program, The Oceanic Institute, Makapuu Point 41-202, Kalanianaole Highway, Waimanalo, HI 96795-1820 USA (phone 808-259-3109, fax 808-259-3121, email email@example.com, webpage www.usmsfp.org).
Source: USMSFP Website. Consortium Research Update FY2005. Editor, Paula Bender (phone 808-259-3193, fax 808-259-3121, email firstname.lastname@example.org, webpage www.usmsfp.org). Volume 12, Number 1, Page 1, January 2006.
Michigan-Farmed Shrimp Wins Super Bowl
Russ Allen, who runs a small, indoor shrimp farm in Michigan, reports:
It is market day here at the farm. I was in early this morning preparing the day's shrimp products when I got some good news!
The Super Bowl is in Detroit next week. In preparation for the big game, there are a series of events that lead up to it, one of them being a luncheon prepared every day in the Media Center. The media center is located in the lobby/atrium of the Renaissance Center, home of General Motors and the headquarters for all official events at the Super Bowl.
Anyway, on Thursday, a local chef will be preparing his specialty, "Home-Grown Michigan Shrimp"with shrimp from our farm! It will be fun to be a part of the hoopla and I look forward to promoting the quality of all USA farm-raised shrimp!
Information: Russell Allen, United States Shrimp Farming Association, 3450 Meridian Road, Okemos, MI 48863 USA (phone 517-347-5537, fax 517-347-4999, email email@example.com).
Source: The US Shrimp List. Subject: Super Bowl. From: shrimpone@.... January 27, 2006.
Nevada-Aquaculture America 2006-Five Shrimp Sessions
Click here to view a list of the presentations/authors/topics at Aquaculture America 2006 (Las Vegas, Nevada, February 13-16, 2006).
Source: Bob Rosenberry, Shrimp News International, February 2, 2003, 2006.
Utah-The Brine Shrimp Industry
The Associated Press reports from Salt Lake City:
Brine shrimp, or Artemia, are one of the few organisms that can live in Utah's Great Salt Lake. Under perfect conditions, an adult female can live as long as three months and produce as many as 300 tiny eggs every four days. It's this bounty of eggs that prompts nearly two dozen companies to fork over $10,000 for each permit (79 permits available) to skim brine shrimp eggs from the surface of the lake. The fishing season usually lasts from sometime in October through January.
Brine shrimp eggs float to the surface of the lake in streaks. Planes spot the streaks and radio their locations to the fishing boats, most of which work out of the marina on Antelope Island.
That $10,000 license buys the right to place one marker buoy on a streak of eggs. Once a boat places its buoy, it's unlawful for another boat to come within 300 yards of it, said Clay Perschon, program manager for the Great Salt Lake Ecosystem Project.
The eggs are harvested in a manner similar to cleaning up an oil spill. Booms are used to surround the "slick" of eggs, which also includes dead shrimp, algae and water. This biomass is then sucked into sacks.
As of January 12, 2006, more than 9 million pounds of biomass has been taken off the lake this season. About a quarter of that amount is likely to turn out to be salable eggs, Perschon said.
After the eggs are taken from the lake, they are cleaned, frozen, brined, tested and dried. Each company has its own processing secrets. Companies are reluctant to discuss the specifics of their processing, and some hold patents on parts of the process, drying in particular.
Don Leonard, president of the Utah Artemia Association, a brine shrimp trade association, said, "Up until about six or seven years ago, Great Salt Lake had as much as 90 percent of the international market. At the present time, we're fighting to hold onto 45 or 50 percent." When brine shrimp fishermen had no harvest in 1999, many of their buyers turned to brine shrimp from China and Russia, which have lower production costs.
The fishermen pay a 3.75-cent tax to the state for each pound of unprocessed product. Last year, this tax brought in $418,700, said Charlie Roberts, a spokesman for the Utah Tax Commission.
Eggs from Utah usually fetch from about $10 to $20 a pound. Over the last 20 years, an average of 2.4 million pounds of processed eggs have been taken off the lake each year. At a price of $12 a pound, that's a $28 million dollar business.
Source: The State.com (newspaper, Columbia, South Carolina, USA). Sea monkey do: brine shrimp harvest is big business on Great Salt Lake (http://www.thestate.com/mld/thestate/business/13687051.htm). Debbie Hummel, Associated Press. January 22, 2006.
Washington, DC-FDA Antibiotics
The USA Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has released its figures on antibiotic testing in seafood for fiscal year 2005. A total number of 536 (172 domestic and 364 import) samples were collected from 15 countries in fiscal year 2005. FDA's testing targeted seven types of antibiotics including 280 samples for chloramphenicol, 39 for nitrofurans, 108 for fluoroquinolones and 18 for malachite green.
The above statistics are for all seafood; here are the statistics on the shrimp tests:
Chloramphenicol (183 samples, 3 positive, Vietnam 2, Thailand 1).
Nitrofurans (39 samples, 3 positive, Indonesia 2, China 1).
Fluoroquinolones (13 samples, all negative).
Malachite (shrimp not tested).
Quinolones (Oxolinic Acid and Flumequine, 9 samples, all negative).
Ivermectin (shrimp not tested).
Oxytetracycline (7 samples, all negative).
Bob Collette, vice president of science and technology at the National Fisheries Institute, a trade association for the fisheries and aquaculture industries, said: "It is noteworthy that the trend for shrimp chloramphenicol testing continues to be downward and shrimp were entirely negative for fluoroquinolones, quinolones, and oxytetracycline."
In fiscal year 2006, FDA plans to test 950 samples of seafood for antibiotics.
Information: Robert L. Collette, Vice President of Science and Technology, National Fisheries Institute, 7918 Jones Branch Drive, Suite 700, McLean, VA 22102 USA (phone 703-752-8886, email firstname.lastname@example.org, webpage www.aboutseafood.com).
Sources: 1. NFInsider (weekly, online newsletter for members of the National Fisheries Institute). FDA Antibiotic Testing Results. Editor, Geraldine Thomas (phone 703-752-8888, email email@example.com, webpage http://www.nfi.org). Volume 5, Issue 4, January 30, 2006. 2. Email to Shrimp News from Bob Collette on January 31, 2006.
Wisconsin-Fast Thaw Shrimp
In business for 55 years, Hatco Corporation manufactures warming, toasting and sanitizing equipment for the food service industry, then distributes and services that equipment through a worldwide network of corporate and representative offices.
Hatco recently introduced the "Hatco Quick Thaw", a device that can thaw a five-pound block of shrimp in just 8 minutes!
For a picture of the machine and a list of its specifications, go to www.hatcocorp.com. Click on "Search" in the upper right hand corner of the homepage and then type "Hatco Quick Thaw" into the search window. In the window that appears, click on the blue link "English".
Information: Hatco Corporation, P.O. Box 340500, Milwaukee, WI 53234-0500 USA (phone 800-558-0607, fax 800-543-7521, international fax 414-671-3976, email firstname.lastname@example.org, webpage www.hatcocorp.com).
Sources: 1. PMQ (The #1 Pizza Industry Publication Website). Revolutionary Breakthrough in Kitchen Efficiency (http://www.pmq.com/cgi-script/csNews/csNews.cgi?database=industrynews.db&command=viewone&id=939&op=t). January 27, 2006. 2. Hatco's website on January 28, 2006.
Volketswil, a supermarket chain in Switzerland, has been selling organic, farmed shrimp from Vietnam since 2002. State-owned Canimex Company and Shrimp Farm 184 in Ca Mau Province supply the shrimp. Gerhard Zurlutter, Volketswil's sales manager, said his company would inject more money into expanding the organic shrimp farming area in Ca Mau province in 2006. He expects Swiss imports of Vietnamese organic shrimp to reach $3.14 million in 2006. In 2004, when imports reached $2 million, the shrimp received high praise from the Association of Swiss Organic Farming Organization (BIO SUISSE).
Source: Thanhnien News.com (the flagship publication of the Vietnam National Youth Federation). Swiss supermarket chain prefers Vietnamese shrimp (http://www.thanhniennews.com/business/?catid=2&newsid=12279). Manh Quan (translated by Thanh Hang). January 25, 2006.