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NMC Progress in Aqua-Farming Wows Visiting Exec

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US - The Northern Marianas College Cooperative Research Extension and Education Services, a program under the Division of Community Programs and Services, was recently praised for its efforts in promoting aqua-farming in the CNMI.

Dr. Cheng-Sheng Lee, director of the Center for Tropical and Subtropical Aquaculture, visited CREES on March 26 for an inspection of the progress of aquaculture in the CNMI and was impressed by CREES's activities to date and by its plans for future promotion, reports SaipanTribune.

According to the news organisation, CTSA is one of five regional aquaculture centers in the United States established by the U.S. Department of Agriculture. The regional aquaculture centers integrate individual and institutional expertise and resources in support of commercial aquaculture development. CTSA was established in 1986 and is jointly administered by the Oceanic Institute and the University of Hawaii.

Lee was treated to a tour, led by NMC-CREES director Ross Manglona and aquaculture specialist Michael Ogo, through the NMC aquaculture facility to show CREES' several grow-out trials with tilapia, shrimp, and abalone. Afterward, the group met to discuss future plans.

Lee stressed the viability of aquaculture in the CNMI, especially since the geographical isolation of the islands warrants disease-free cultured fish. While other fish culturing countries are fighting an expensive battle against bacteria and viruses, the CNMI could brand their products disease-free with a minimal investment in biosecurity.