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New Indian-Made Shrimp Feed to Cut Costs for Farmers

5 April 2016, at 1:00am

INDIA - Researchers at the Central Institute of Brackishwater Aquaculture (CIBA) have developed a highly cost-effective formulated feed for the shrimp industry.

Branded as Vannamei Plus, the Indian-made feed matches the output levels of international brands.

The technology is attracting large-scale farmers and entrepreneurs from different aquaculture States like Andhra, Gujarat and Kerala. Three medium-scale feed mills have been built in several states and will be inaugurated later this month to meet the local demand, reports the NewIndianExpress.

CIBA director Dr K K Vijayan told the newspaper that in shrimp aquaculture industry, the feed constitutes 60 per cent of cost of production.

In the last five years, the cost of shrimp-feed has more than doubled. The current market price is Rs 88 per kg, while the actual input cost is under Rs 50. Companies thus enjoy large margins.

“Now, through Vannamei Plus, we want to cut the cost of production by at least 20 per cent. To produce one kilo of the commercial feed, it costs Rs 140 per kilogram. With Vannamei Plus, the cost is reduced to Rs 91 per kilo.

There is huge scope for small and marginal farmers to enter the market using the low cost Vannamei Plus,” the director said and added that the institute is in talks with NFDB to lend soft loans for farmers for setting up feed mills using CIBA technology.

Karuna Raju, a farmer from Baptla in Guntur of Andhra, has invested Rs 1.5 crore to build a feed mill using CIBA technology to produce Vannamei Plus for his 50 hectares of shrimp farm.

Dr K Ambashankar, principal scientist and in-charge nutrition group, CIBA, said the technology needs to become more mainstream with small and medium scale feed mills that need to be set-up across the country.

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