News & Views
Percid culture gaining ground in Europe
By Quentin Dodd
By Quentin Dodd
There’s growing interest in percid culture for the food industry in Europe. This interest set the stage, theme and background for a workshop by the European Aquaculture Society Thematic Group on European Percid Fish Culture, which was held this past summer in Trondheim, Norway.
Organizer Stefan Teerlinck, from Inagro in Belgium, reported that four keynote presentations were given on different topics of relevance to the sector, ranging from pikeperch in Germany and a breeding program in Denmark, to extensive versus intensive pikeperch production in the Czech Republic and the production of pikeperch in a Recirculating Aquaculture System (RAS).
Stefan Meyer, from the Gesellschaft für Marine Aquakultur (GMA, Association for Marine Aquaculture) outlined the current percid-culture situation in Germany and gave a short summary of some of the known bottlenecks associated with RAS-based production.
Meyer noted that the positive culture characteristics of the species and its suitability for year-round RAS production are “inarguable,” adding that in recent years “a lot” of water-recirculating producers have started up businesses in Germany.
He cautioned, however, that the lure of high prices in the marketplace have frequently combined with “underestimated costs” and the complexity of production, to present severe difficulties to a high proportion of the start-ups. This has prompted the creation of a list of indicators of viability to protect “all participating beneficiaries” – producers, investors, suppliers, and retailers. A draft compilation is expected by the end of this year.
Another workshop “Percid fish culture in Southern European countries” is being organized by Teerlinck and Meyer for the European Aquaculture Society Conference, San Sebastian, Spain, October 14-17, 2014.
– Quentin Dodd