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Potential for Sturgeon Farming in Viet Nam

by the Fish Site Editor
06 February 2009, at 12:00am

VIET NAM Vietnam possesses huge potential for the successful breeding of sturgeon, following an announcement that the first generation of sturgeon to be raised in the country have laid eggs, just three years into a pilot breeding programme.

Dr Bui The Anh, a sturgeon expert from the Research Institute of Aquaculture 1 (RIA 1), confirmed that sturgeon can breed successfully in the country’s cold-water mountainous areas.

”It took France 30 years and Russia six years to produce sturgeon eggs while Vietnam has achieved this in just over three years,” he said.

With assistance from Russian experts, RIA 1 imported sturgeon and began experimenting with breeding the species in May 2005. Currently, the institute is coordinating with the Ha Quang Co, Ltd and the Vinashin Vung Tau Joint Stock Company to raise Siberian, Chinese and Sterlet sturgeon in Na Hang in Tuyen Quang province and Sapa in Lao Cai province, as well as a number of locations in the Central Highlands.

Scientists believe that Vietnam ’s high temperatures can help sturgeon to develop more rapidly, compared to other countries. The first batch of sturgeon eggs is expected to be harvested in March or April of this year.

Anh added that an expansion of Vietnam ’s sturgeon breeding projects will bring in various socio-economic benefits to the country’s aquatic sector.

Sturgeon, a species of fish that appeared on the earth approximately 100 million years ago, is renowned for its delicious and nutritious meat, particularly when smoked. However, sturgeon roe, or caviar, is prized by gourmets worldwide. Its price reflects its relative rarity - caviar currently fetches between 4,000-6,000 USD/ kg in the world market.

Outside of captivity, sturgeon can be found in the waters of the Caspian Sea, the Northern Pacific Ocean and the Black Sea . Those in the Caspian region of Russia have, on average, the longest lives in the country, a fact that has been attributed to their love of sturgeon roe.

Wild sturgeon is at risk of extinction as a result of overfishing due to its high economic value, prompting the United Nations to include the species in the Convention on the International Trade of Endangered Species (CITES), which forbids the import of wild sturgeon roe.

the Fish Site Editor

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