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Kona Bay Marine Resources
Plans to Farm Marine Fish,
On the island of Kauai, in Hawaii, Kona Bay Marine Resources (see links below) operates a small shrimp farm that produces western white shrimp (Penaeus vannamei) for local consumption and a maturation facility that produces white shrimp broodstock for export around the world.
In conjunction with a state Department of Health public hearing on the farm’s application for a discharge permit, Dr. George Chamberlain, part owner of the farm, gave a presentation on the farm at a public meeting in Hawaii.
Dr. Chamberlain has a long history in aquaculture and shrimp farming. After receiving his Ph.D. from Texas A&M University in 1988, he worked for Ralston Purina’s international aquaculture program from 1990-1994, spending two years in Mexico City, where he managed sales of aquatic feeds (mostly shrimp feed). Next he took a job with Monsanto Company in 1998, when Monsanto was exploring the possibility of entering the shrimp farming arena.
In 1999, Chamberlain partnered with Ken Morrison, one of the original investors in the Ecuadorean shrimp farming industry. Together they developed a couple of big, integrated giant tiger (Penaeus monodon) shrimp farming operations in Malaysia, and, currently, they have a contract with the Government of Brunei to help develop its shrimp farming industry. In between all of that, Chamberlain served as president of the World Aquaculture Society for a year (1995-1996), and in 1997, he founded the Global Aquaculture Alliance, where he continues to serve as president and the organization’s guiding light.
In a recent email to Shrimp News, Chamberlain said: “In March 2009, Mr. Morrison and I learned that Kona Bay Marine Resources in Kauai would soon be offered for sale. We were impressed with their Penaeus vannamei breeding facilities, farm and processing plant—and with manager, Jim Sweeney, and his dedicated staff. We decided to buy the operation and began upgrading the P. vannamei breeding program and broadening the range of species reared at the farm.”
Report on Kona Bay from The Garden Island
After Chamberlain’s presentation at the public hearing on Kona Bays’s discharge permit, The Garden Island newspaper published the following report:
The farming portion of Kona Bay breaks even, and the company is making money on its broodstock operation. All profits are reinvested in the business. Eventually, in addition to shrimp, the farm hopes to produce everything from kahala and moi (marine fish) to oysters and clams and seaweed and algae.
While managing shrimp projects in Asia, Chamberlain purchased broodstock from the previous owners of Kona Bay and knew they had a great product. “We were super impressed with the operation,” which he called the “Cadillac” of shrimp hatcheries because of the clean seawater adjacent to the facility. In other places around the world, Chamberlain and company spent tons of money at shrimp facilities trying to protect the water quality, and still they could not achieve the water quality that’s available for free right off their site on Kauai, where the seawater is filtered through lava rock and comes to the farm almost nutrient free and bacteria free.
Kona Bay’s broodstock operation competes against some of the top companies in the world, while its farm produces for the fresh, local market, an advantage that means the shrimp can be sold immediately after harvest without processing.
The shrimp whitespot virus wiped out the previous owners of the Kona Bay farm. Chamberlain thinks birds feeding on imported frozen shrimp discarded at a nearby landfill carried the virus to the farm. He has installed netting over the ponds to keep birds from swooping in for a free lunch and, potentially, leaving behind devastating diseases.
The company has assembled a team of industry experts, including Jim Sweeney, general manager, who was with the Oceanic Institute on Oahu and, before that, the Fujinaga Penaeid Shrimp Institute in Japan.
Some surfers and other beach users have complained about nasty smells emanating from the farm. Chamberlain said his team has identified dead and decaying tilapia in one of their drainage ditches as the cause of the odors, and he has instituted measures to keep the tilapia from getting onto the farm.
Kona Bay is also plunging headlong into producing algae that could be converted to jet fuel, a project that has federal funding through the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency.
Information: George Chamberlain, Integrated Aquaculture International, 5661 Telegraph Road, Suite 3A, St. Louis, Missouri 63129, USA (phone 1-314-293-5500, fax 1-314-293-5525, email email@example.com, webpage http://www.integratedaquaculture.com/index.html).
Sources: 1. The Garden Island. Kekaha Farm Owner Has Plans for Much More Than Shrimp. November 25, 2010. 2. Email from George Chamberlain on December 11, 2011. 3. Bob Rosenberry, Shrimp News International, December 14, 2010.
Belize Aquaculture—For Sale
Built at a cost in excess of $75 million, Belize Aquaculture, Ltd., one of the largest intensive shrimp farms in the world, is for sale for $37.5 million. The first 68 growout ponds (1.4 hectares each) have consistently produced 2,250 metric tons of whole, western white shrimp (Penaeus vannamei) a year. A maturation facility and hatchery are in place that could support the production of up to 11,000 tons of shrimp annually—with some capital investment in growout ponds.
The country of Belize has free trade agreements with England and the European Community. The farm can fly fresh shrimp to markets throughout the USA.
State-of-the-art Processing Plant:
• ISO 9001:2008 and ISO 14001:2008 certified
• HAACP and BRC certified
• Handles 36,000 kilograms of shrimp in a nine-hour shift
• Value-added products
• Less than 12 hours from harvest to freezer
• Peeling lines capable of supplying an IQF spiral freezer
• Cooking lines with capacity of 1,700 kilograms of shrimp per hour
• Frigoscandia IQF spiral freezer
• Cabinplant multi-plant scales
• Rovema vertical form-fill-seal equipment
• Maturation/hatchery facility capable of producing 50 million nauplii per week
• A larval rearing facility capable of producing 25 million PL-16s a week
• R&D facility
• 68 fully lined production ponds (1.4-hectares each)
• On-site housing for employees
• Workshops, settling ponds, water reservoirs, feed silos, paved roads, airstrip, fresh water, salt water pumping station with 20 inch HDPE pipelines, and an underground high voltage electrical distribution system connecting all facilities
The existing infrastructure could easily support expansion to 185 production ponds. Production ponds provide harvests averaging 11,500 to 15,500 kilograms per hectare of whole animals per acre per crop. With 2.0 to 2.4 crops per year, 185 ponds could produce up to 39,500 kg per hectare per year.
Nick Carpenter, general manager of Belize Aquaculture, says, “Expanded infrastructure is in place to provide for immediate growout pond expansion, and the hatchery and processing plant are already capable of handling more production.”
Information: Timothy W. Tully, Tully & Holland, Inc., 60 William Street, Suite 100 Wellesley, Massachusetts 02481, USA (phone 1-781-239-2900, extension 14, fax 1-781-239-2901, email firstname.lastname@example.org, webpage http://www.tullyandholland.com).
Source: Email from Timothy W. Tully to Shrimp News International on December 6, 2010. Re: Acquisition Opportunity—Belize Aquaculture, Ltd. December 6, 2010.
Polyploidy in Penaeid Shrimp, a Review
From Abstract: In those shrimp species comprehensively studied, polyploidy is currently the only known technique that can achieve the dual outcomes of reproductive sterility for genetic protection and skewing sex ratios towards a high proportion of females, which are larger than males in all the penaeid shrimp. This article reviews the scientific literature on polyploidy—along with the knowledge the shrimp farming industry has accumulated on the topic.
Source: Aquaculture. Penaeid Shrimp Polyploidy: Global Status and Future Direction. M.J. Sellars (email@example.com, CSIRO Food Futures National Research Flagship, 5 Julius Avenue, North Ryde, NSW 2113, Australia), F. Li, N.P. Preston and J. Xiang. Volume 310, Issues 1-2, Pages 1–244, December 22, 2010.
New Food Safety Center with a Little Help from the USA
In April 2010, the University of Maryland, the USA Government and the Bangladesh Shrimp and Fish Foundation (BSFF) signed an agreement for a joint research and training program to improve the quality of the shrimp and prawns produced by Bangladesh. As a direct result of that agreement, the new Aquaculture and Aquatic Food Safety Centre will open at the beginning of 2011, said BSFF Chairman Syed Mahmudul Huq. It will provide training on aquaculture practices and the code of conduct for the major stakeholders of the aquaculture industry. The Centre will also sponsor the exchange of scholars and experts for seminars, conferences and research. It will become part of the Bangladesh Ministry of Commerce and receive $2 million in USAID.
The Joint Institute for Food Safety and Applied Nutrition (JIFSAN), an initiative of the US Food and Drug Administration, the University of Maryland and BSFF, has already initiated a training program for trainers that will implement “Good Aquaculture Practices” throughout Bangladesh.
Source: The Financial Express. Aquatic Food Safety Centre Kicks Off Early Next Year. Sonia H. Moni. November 20, 2010.
Nitrofurans Occur Naturally in Crustacean Shells
In November 2010, at a symposium in Brussels, Bangladesh officials presented evidence that nitrofurans occur naturally in shrimp shells—and in all crustacean shells. Two studies support this conclusion. In the first, a total of 60 samples of shrimp grown in different areas of Bangladesh were tested in laboratories. It revealed that nitrofurans and other antibiotics occur in the shells, heads and meat of shrimp. In fact, when they test for antibiotics, EU authorities mix all three body components together. If shrimp are tested without the shell, however, the presence of nitrofurans is almost negligible. The second study confirmed the results of the first.
In 2009, Bangladesh stopped exporting shrimp for eight months because nitrofurans were showing up in European antibiotic tests, and later the EU instituted a 20 percent mandatory testing of all Bangladesh’s shrimp. Now Bangladesh wants the EU to end its mandatory testing requirements on shrimp from Bangladesh. “The presence of nitrofuran is natural and it is found in the shell of shrimp and not in the meat,” said Mohammad Shamsul Kibria, joint secretary of Ministry of Fisheries and Livestock, a participant at the symposium. He added, “We are hopeful about the withdrawal of the 20 percent testing requirement from Bangladesh after an EU team visits early next year.”
The EU has issued a new directive to all its labs, instructing them to test shrimp shells and shrimp meat separately.
Source: Financial Express. Bangladesh’s Image Crisis in EU Over. December 3, 2010.
Farmed Shrimp Statistics
With 14,500 hectares in production, the shrimp farming industry hopes to close 2010 with sales of 50 million pounds worth $200 million. The industry employs 25,000 people directly and 100,000 indirectly, according to statistics provided by the National Aquaculture Association of Honduras (ANDAH).
Jacobo Paz, a representative of ANDAH, said that the main market for Honduran shrimp was the European Union, followed by the United States and Taiwan. Some companies have exported shrimp to Hong Kong.
Video—A Small Intensive Shrimp Farm
This two-minute video of the Rut Sisters shrimp farm shows a typical, small, outdoor, intensive shrimp farm near the Gulf of Thailand. The two sisters live on the farm, and get up every few hours during the night to check on the ponds. In the video, you see shots of long-arm aerators (not turned on), the 18-inch-high crab fences that surround all the ponds, an employee feeding the ponds scoop-by-scoop, and the pink netting that protects the ponds from birds. The video appears to be made by an American tourist who wants to learn more about shrimp farming. He asks his non-English-speaking guide: “Where are the shrimp?” No answer.
Source: YouTube. Shrimp Farmers. November 23, 2010.
Alabama—A Review of Shrimp Farming in Low-Salinity Water
From Abstract: Inland aquaculture of shrimp in low salinity waters is widespread around the world. Because of its ability to grow and survive in low-salinity environments, the western white shrimp (Penaeus vannamei) is the species of choice for low-salinity shrimp farming. Techniques have been developed to improve its adaptation to low-salinity water, including the addition of potassium and magnesium to the pond water and the modification of the feeds. It appears the first technique is more effective at improving growth and survival than the second.
Source: Reviews In Aquaculture. Shrimp Culture in Inland Low Salinity Waters. Luke A. Roy (firstname.lastname@example.org, Department of Fisheries and Allied Aquacultures, 203 Swingle Hall, Auburn University, Auburn, Alabama 36849-5419, USA), D. Allen Davis, I. Patrick Saoud, Chris A. Boyd, Harvey J. Pine, Claude E. Boyd. Volume-2, Issue-4, Pages 191-208. December 2010.
Arizona—Dr. Lightner’s Shrimp Pathology Short Course
The 2011 University of Arizona Shrimp Pathology Short Course, the 23rd, will be held on June 6-17, 2011, at the University of Arizona in Tucson, Arizona, USA.
The course, titled “Shrimp Pathology Short Course: Disease Diagnosis and Control in Marine Shrimp Culture”, is taught by Dr. Donald Lightner and his colleagues from the Aquaculture Pathology Laboratory at the University of Arizona. The course consists of comprehensive lectures and practical laboratory training focused on current methods used to diagnose, prevent and treat the principal diseases of farmed penaeid shrimp. The course also provides an excellent opportunity for participants to meet and interact with others involved in shrimp disease research and management.
Information: Donald V. Lightner, Professor, or Rita Redman, Short Course Coordinator, Department of Veterinary Science and Microbiology, The University of Arizona, Building 90, Room 102, Tucson, Arizona 85721, USA (1-520-621-4438, fax 1-520-621-4899, emails email@example.com and firstname.lastname@example.org, webpage http://microvet.arizona.edu/research/aquapath/index.htm
Source: Aquacontacts Mail Group News (USDA). From: Gary Jensen (email@example.com). Announcing the 2011 Shrimp Pathology Short Course. November 29, 2010.
Texas—Job at NaturalShrimp Corporation
NaturalShrimp, a small, intensive, indoor shrimp farm, has a position open for a shrimp production manager.
• Bachelor of Science in aquaculture related field
• Fluency in English, oral and written.
• Demonstrated experience with management of intensive shrimp production systems, including nursery production and growout. Specific experience with intensive biofloc production systems for marine shrimp is a plus.
Special Instruction: Please email or post the following documents to Doug Ernst: (1) Cover letter, (2) resume, including education, experience, and contact information, and (3) names, affiliations, email addresses, and phone numbers for three professional references.
Closing Date: Monday, February 28, 2011.
Source: AquaNic (The Aquaculture Network Information Center, a gateway to the world’s electronic aquaculture resources). Jobs Directory in cooperation with the WAS Employment Service. Search jobs. Shrimp Production Manager. Posted December 15, 2010.
Washington DC—Food Safety Bill Passes Senate, President Obama Supports It
On November 23, 2010, the U.S. Senate passed a food-safety bill that has been on the backburner for a year—without the last-minute amendment targeting shrimp imports.
The Food Safety Modernization Act, introduced by Senator Richard Durbin (Democrat, Illinois) in March 2009, is designed to expand the U.S. Food and Drug Administration’s authority to test food for pathogens, trace outbreaks, order recalls and penalize companies.
On November 22, 2010, Senator Mary Landrieu (Democrat, Louisiana) introduced language into the bill that would require the FDA to increase testing of imported shrimp from less than two percent to 20 percent by 2015. The goal was to curb shrimp imports tainted with illegal antibiotics and pesticides. That amendment was not included in the final legislation.
The National Fisheries Institute, an association of seafood industry professionals, commended the Senate for passing the food-safety bill, which it has supported since its introduction. In addition to NFI, the Food Marketing Institute also applauded the bill.
President Barack Obama said, “I urge the House, which has previously passed legislation demonstrating its strong commitment to making our food supply safer, to act quickly on this critical bill, and I applaud the work that was done to ensure its broad bipartisan passage in the Senate.”
Washington DC—The New York Times on the Food Safety Bill
The food safety bill, which passed by a vote of 73 to 25, would greatly strengthen the Food and Drug Administration, an agency that in recent decades focused more on policing medical products than ensuring the safety of food. The bill is intended to keep unsafe foods from reaching markets and restaurants, where they can make people sick—a change from the current practice, which mainly involves cracking down after outbreaks occur.
Despite unusual bipartisan support on Capitol Hill and a strong push from the Obama administration, the bill could still die because there might not be enough time for the usual haggling between the Senate and the House, which passed its own version last year. Top House Democrats said they were considering simply passing the Senate version to speed approval, but that no decision had been made.
While food safety advocates and many industry groups prefer the House version because it includes more money for inspections and fewer exceptions from the rules, most said the Senate bill was better than nothing.
“This legislation means that parents who tell their kids to eat their spinach can be assured that it won’t make them sick,” said Senator Tom Harkin, Democrat of Iowa, who, as chairman of the Senate health committee, shepherded the legislation through months of negotiations.
The bill gives the agency more control over food imports, including increased inspection of foreign processing plants and the ability to set standards for how fruits and vegetables are grown abroad!
The bill would give the FDA the power to demand immediate food recalls.
The bill is one of the few major pieces of bipartisan legislation to emerge from this Congress.
Source: The Webpage of the New York Times. Senate Passes Sweeping Law on Food Safety. Gardiner Harris and William Neuman. November 30, 2010.
Washington DC—Food Safety Legislation Runs Into Tricky Problem
Food safety legislation that has passed both the House and Senate and that has the President’s approval has run into a Constitutional snag. There are two versions of the bill—a House version and a Senate version—and no time to reconcile them before the end of the year. So to get the bill passed before the end of the year, Congress is going to have to choose either the House version or the Senate version, but only the Senate version is ready to go to the President. But that won’t work because the Constitution stipulates that any bill containing fees (tax provisions) must originate in the House. So, House Democrats are attempting to fix the problem by adding the legislation to a catch-all spending bill unveiled on December 8, 2010.
Source: Seafood.com (an online, subscription-based, fisheries news service). Editor and Publisher, John Sackton (phone 1-781-861-1441, email firstname.lastname@example.org). Democrats Will Try to Fix Food Safety Bill by Attaching It to “Must Pass” Continuing Resolution. Ken Coons (email@example.com). July 14, 2010.
Washington DC—WWF/ASC Shrimp Standards
On December 1, 2010, the World Wildlife Fund’s draft standards for responsible shrimp aquaculture entered their second and final comment period. Feedback received during the 60-day public comment period will be used to finalize the standards by the first or second quarter of 2011. The standards-development process began in 2007 and has included more than 400 shrimp farmers, conservationists, government officials, academics and other shrimp farming stakeholders.
The WWF standards are the only ones for aquaculture that comply with the International Social and Environmental Accreditation and Labeling Alliance’s guidelines for creating environmental and social standards.
The shrimp standards will be given to the Aquaculture Stewardship Council (ASC) to manage when that entity is in operation. WWF is helping to create ASC, which will be responsible for working with independent, third-party entities to certify farms that are in compliance with the standards being created by participants of the Aquaculture Dialogues.
To review the draft shrimp standards and provide input, go to http://www.worldwildlife.org/shrimpdialogue.
Source: World Wildlife Fund. Press Release. Process of Creating Global Standards for Responsible Shrimp Aquaculture Enters Final Stage. December 1, 2010.
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