June 28, 2022

Aquaculture as Gateway to “Blue Economy” for CRFM States

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unnamedBELIZE CITY, Wednesday, July 30, 2014 (CRFM Secretariat)—Globally, aquaculture is a multi-billion-dollar industry, but the Caribbean has yet to tap into its true potential to expand marine and fresh water aquaculture. The good news is that a recently concluded study will provide the necessary foundation for a region-wide programme to harness more from the culture of fish and other fisheries products.

Milton Haughton, Executive Director of the Caribbean Regional Fisheries Mechanism (CRFM), emphasizes that, “Aquaculture has the potential to make greater contribution to economic and social development of the Caribbean, provided that appropriate policy frameworks and incentives are provided for stakeholders in the sector.”

The State of World Fisheries and Aquaculture (2014), published by the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations, said that world food fish aquaculture production expanded at an average annual rate of 6.2 percent in the period 2000–2012 (and 9.5 percent in 1990–2000), from 32.4 million to 66.6 million tonnes, with growth being relatively faster in Africa (11.7 percent) and Latin America and the Caribbean (10 percent).

In 2008, only 2.9 percent of fishers and fish farmers were in Latin America and the Caribbean, according to the FAO stats. That is because the aquaculture sector is not well developed in the CARICOM region. Significant development has been limited to countries like Jamaica and Belize, but other countries like Guyana, Haiti, Suriname and Trinidad and Tobago have begun to put more emphasis on aquaculture as an area for development.

“The practices mainly involve the use of ponds to culture such species as penaeid shrimp (Penaeus spp.), tilapia 2014-07-11_11_30_32(Oreochromis spp.), carp (Ctenopharyngodon idellus, Hypophthalmichthys nobilis, Hypophthalmichthys molitrix) and cachama (Colossoma macropomum). Also, there is long line culture for algae (Eucheuma spp. and Gracelaria spp.) in St. Lucia and the mangrove oyster (Crassostrea rhizophorae) in Jamaica,” the CRFM notes.

The CRFM has identified the promotion and development of aquaculture as one of its priority programme areas, and it has identified the formulation of aquaculture development policy and legislation as key areas for attention.

As a part of the initiative, the CRFM has established a new 2014-07-11_11_32_59Aquaculture Working Group which will be tasked with identifying bottlenecks and constraints to aquaculture development and make proposals to the Caribbean Fisheries Forum, the technical and advisory arm of the CRFM, and the CRFM Ministerial Council, for addressing these constraints.

The Aquaculture Working Group will promote sustainable aquaculture development at the national and regional levels. The Group will also advise countries on policies, programmes and projects which would help promote the development of aquaculture.

The objective is to increase food production and security, 2014-07-11_11_47_32improve rural income and employment, diversify farm production, and increase foreign exchange earnings and reduce the high food import bill.

The Working Group is also tasked with promoting market and value-added product research to improve the marketing and trade of fish and fish products from the aquaculture sector.

The Group will also assist CRFM Member States with developing feasibility studies, socio-economic analyses, policy, planning and project formulation. It will promote interdisciplinary research on selected aqua-farming systems, with the intent of adapting and or improvement of technologies, and for the development of new technologies that are environmentally suitable/appropriate and the utilization of renewable energy sources

The Aquaculture Working Group will assist in the development of programmes for the promotion of the participation of women and youth in the aquaculture industry/sector at all levels. It will also promote the transfer of appropriate aquaculture technologies and techniques developed at the national and regional levels, and assist CRFM Member States to strengthen their national aquaculture agencies/organizations.

Aquaculture experts from CRFM Member States, the private sector, international aquaculture experts, as well as institutions which focus on the aquaculture development at the national and regional levels, such as UWI and FAO, will form a part of the new Working Group.

The Working Group will hold regular electronic meetings in between annual face-to-face annual meetings. The first face-to-face Meeting of the CRFM Aquaculture Working Group will be held at the Grand Coastal Hotel in Guyana from July 31 to August 1, 2014, with funding provided by The Technical Centre for Agricultural and Rural Cooperation ACP-EU (CTA) . The upcoming Workshop will review and finalize a Regional Study and Five-Year Action Plan for aquaculture development in the region.


The Caribbean Regional Fisheries Mechanism (CRFM) was officially inaugurated on March 27, 2003, in Belize City, Belize, where it is headquartered, following the signing of the “Agreement Establishing the CRFM” on February 4, 2002. It is an inter-governmental organization with its mission being “to promote and facilitate the responsible utilization of the region’s fisheries and other aquatic resources for the economic and social benefits of the current and future population of the region.”

The CRFM consists of three bodies: the Ministerial Council, the Caribbean Fisheries Forum and the CRFM Secretariat. Its members are Anguilla, Antigua and Barbuda, The Bahamas, Barbados, Belize, Dominica, Grenada, Guyana, Haiti, Jamaica, Montserrat, St. Kitts and Nevis, St. Lucia, St. Vincent and the Grenadines, Suriname, Trinidad and Tobago, and the Turks and Caicos Islands.


Related story:

$740K for PR-USVI fishery council

carib fisheryFrom CB Online

The U.S. government has assigned more than $740,000 for fishery conservation and management around Puerto Rico and the U.S. Virgin Islands.

The funding from the National Oceanic & Atmospheric Administration and the U.S. Commerce Department will go to the Caribbean Fishery Management Council to help the National Marine Fisheries Service manage resources under its jurisdiction in the Caribbean.

“This finding assures the continuation of conservation and management efforts to promote sustainability and prevent potential economic losses tied to overfishing, declines in fish stock and loss of habitat,” Resident Commissioner Pedro Pierluisi said.

The Caribbean Fisheries Management Council is responsible for managing the conservation and sustainable utilization of the fishery resources in the waters around Puerto Rico and the U.S. Virgin Islands.

The budget and operations of the Caribbean Fishery Management Council, which include establishing fishing guidelines and conservation measures in our waters, depend on federal funds.

The San Juan-based Caribbean Fishery Management Council is one of eight regional fishery management councils, established under the Magnuson-Stevens Act (also called the Sustainable Fisheries Act) for the conservation and orderly utilization of the fishery resources of the United States.

The Caribbean Fishery Management Council includes the commonwealth of Puerto Rico and the USVI. It has ten members, seven with vote and three with voice but no vote. Four of the voting members are appointed by the U.S. secretary of Commerce upon recommendations of the governors of Puerto Rico and the USVI. The other voting members are directly designated by the act: the principal officials from Puerto Rico and the USVI with marine fishery management responsibility, and the regional administrator for the National Marine Fisheries Service’s southeast regional office. The three non-voting members are: the director of the southeast (Atlanta) region of the U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service, the commander of the Seventh (Miami) District of the U.S. Coast Guard, and a representative from the U.S. Department of State.

The Caribbean Fishery Management Council is unique in being the only council that does not include one of the fifty states of the union and in sharing fish stocks with many Caribbean nations.

The Caribbean Fishery Management Council is responsible for the creation of management plans for fishery resources (FMPs) in the U.S. Caribbean Exclusive Economic Zone off Puerto Rico and the USVI.

For more on this story go to: http://www.caribbeanbusinesspr.com/news/$740k-for-pr-usvi-fishery-council-99062.html



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