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October 18, 2019

 

Singapore turns to aquaculture for future fish stocks

 
 

The Singapore Food Agency (SFA) is looking towards aquaculture to feed the country with fish stock on the decline due to global warming and overfishing.

 

The country has 123 fish farms that produced 4,600 tonnes of fish in 2018. This makes up 9% of the total fish consumption in the country.

 

SFA believes increased local production alleviates Singapore’s reliance on fish imports and can work as a buffer if supply disruptions were to happen.

 

Through aquaculture, Singapore will be assured of a steady and reliable production of fish stocks, and an anticipated way to tackle climate change and severe weather issues that may arise.

 

Aquaculture is growing sector around the world, accounting for more than 50% of the world's seafood protein source today compared to only 10% 30 years ago, said Professor Dean Jerry, Deputy Director for the Centre for Sustainable Tropical Fisheries and Aquaculture at James Cook University.

 

He added that as a small island nation with little land, Singapore stands to benefit from focusing towards aquaculture­—it requires less land, water and feed. 50 to 80 tonnes of fish per hectare can be produced in an aquaculture farm.
 

He warns however, that aquaculture is at risk to extreme environmental disasters and rising water temperatures that lead to disease outbreaks and the growth of harmful algae that suffocates fish or makes them too toxic to consume. Disease impacts 40% of aquaculture production in the world.

 

To overcome these challenges, Singapore fish farmers like Singapore Aquaculture Technologies uses a closed contained aquaculture system—this separates sea water from the water in the fish pens, protecting the fish from contamination.

 

- The Straits Times

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