July 4, 2011


South Korea leads desert-based shrimp cultivation project



South Korea is the key leader of the marine shrimp farming project that will take place in the middle of the Sahara desert as it consented to funnel its technology and capital into the venture.


The new technology will be made possible by 2014.


This shrimp farming project is part of the economic cooperation partnership between Korea and Algeria, and the success of the project can further cement bilateral relations. The shrimp farming project in Algeria's Saharan desert had officially begun on May 20, said the Ministry of Food, Agriculture, Forestry and Fisheries (MIFAFF).


Shrimps are popular food ingredients for high-end dishes in the region, and prices generally run steep.


The Korean government has enlisted the help of the National Fisheries Research & Development Institute (NFRD) and the Korea International Cooperation Agency (KOICA) to supply manpower and technology to build a shrimp farm in the middle of the world's largest desert.


Algeria's portion of the Sahara desert has an extensive underground water source beneath its sand layers, with a salt concentration of 4-5%. This will facilitate replication of the marine environment for the shrimp farm.


The project consists of building a research center and facilitating technology transfer. The commercially produced shrimps may be able to hit the markets by 2014, at the earliest.


The success of bringing marine farming, which usually takes place in rivers or oceans, to the world's largest desert, will also help further the reputation of Korea as the main hand behind the Saharan miracle.

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