New Finfish Research Centre to provide aquaculture boost

Hatchery International Staff
October 10, 2018
By Hatchery International Staff
New Finfish Research Centre to provide aquaculture boost
Photo//Cawthron
NEW ZEALAND - New Zealand-based independent science organization Cawthron Institute opened its new Finfish Research Centre located at the Cawthron Aquaculture Park near Nelson, New Zealand on Tuesday.

The facility contains systems and capacity unique to the country and will provide a world-class centre for finfish research, the organization – which has unique expertise in aquaculture research – said in a statement.

“The centre will deliver commercially relevant science to enable improved stock management, breeding, and husbandry and will support the development and growth of the aquaculture industry,” said Cawthron Institute’s aquaculture group manager Dr. Serean Adams.

Adams said the efficient salmon research program currently underway in the facility will combine new, innovative analytical tools with industry-wide data analysis, environmental monitoring, and controlled trials. “This will translate into a step-change in industry know-how and selective breeding of finfish to boost production efficiency, leading to greater economic returns and sustainable environmental management,” she noted.

“For farmers, fish growth rates, how healthy their stocks are and how efficiently they convert feed into weight gain are important factors for optimizing productivity and make a big difference to the economic bottom line and to environmental sustainability,” Adams continued. “Feed is the largest cost of farming fish so knowledge about food conversion efficiency and the underlying biological processes that determine it is extremely important.”

Cawthron senior qquaculture scientist Dr. Jane Symonds is leading the efficient salmon program and said it’s important to identify and fill knowledge gaps.  

“By understanding processes that influence finfish feed conversion, industry can improve its performance, profitability, and sustainability,” Symonds said.

The organization said this multi-disciplinary research involves multiple New Zealand and international collaborators. The Cawthron team has been joined by five new technical staff working at the centre.

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