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Indiana Soybean Alliance Names Aquaculture Director

US - The Indiana Soybean Alliance (ISA) has named Steven Hart of Lebanon, IN. as the organizations new Aquaculture Director.

In August, the ISA board of directors created an Aquaculture Initiative as a part of the ISA’s Strategic Plan. The new program focuses on increasing the use of soybean meal in Indiana farm-raised fish diets through the growth of the state’s aquaculture industry. "Raising awareness among farmers that aquaculture is a viable form of agriculture in Indiana is one of my top priorities," said Hart, who joined ISA in October. "I look forward to working with farmers, feed manufacturers, food processors, government representatives and other key stakeholders to make Indiana a national leader in supplying our country’s demand for fresh seafood."

Currently, research and feeding trials have shown that soy protein can partially or, in some cases, totally replace fish meal in more than 50 fish species - many that can be raised in Indiana. Hart plans to work towards the development of soy-based feeds that can be used by Indiana fish farmers. "The combination of new producers and soy-based feeds should open new markets for Indiana soybeans within the state," he said. "The long-term goal of this initiative is to create a demand for Indiana-branded, soy-fed fish."

ISA Executive Director Chris Novak noted that the aquaculture initiative and Hart’s addition to the staff reflect Indiana’s commitment to building new markets for soybean producers. "Aquaculture represents a major new market for soybean meal, but to grow this industry requires a long-term commitment to connecting aquaculture production, processing and marketing," said Novak. "The majority of seafood consumed in the U.S. today comes from imported sources. Our goal with this program is to make Indiana-fresh aquaculture the premier choice for U.S. consumers. We’re excited to have Steve on-board leading this effort.”

Source: HoosieragToday