Aquaculture for all

Seafood Global Expo: Zonal Management to Help Beat Disease Outbeaks

Health Biosecurity Welfare +9 more

BELGIUM - The Global Aquaculture Alliance set out details of its zone management scheme at the opening of the Global Seafood Expo in Brussels on Tuesday, writes Chris Harris.

The scheme under the chairmanship of the former CEO of Global Trust Peter Marshall that had been announced at the Seafood Expo North America in March will aim to establish cooperation within the industry for zonal best practices management.

According to Peter Redmond, BAP vice president of market development, the object of the scheme is to have the aquaculture operations work together rather than as individuals to mitigate potential disease outbreaks.

Zone management, or spatial planning, encompasses measuring the collective impacts of aquaculture at the ecosystem level.

In addition to protecting the ecosystem, zone management is intended to reduce the risk of disease.

The technical committee under the chairmanship of Mr Marshall will identify the conditions that lead to disease and recommend measures to avoid or mitigate disease, which may include regulating the density of farms within a designated zone so as to avoid sharing of water inputs and outfalls; quarantining and controlling the movement of animals into the zone and between farms once introduced; adoption of best aquaculture practices at farm-level to reduce stress and improve animal welfare; introducing basic sanitary measures at the farm level; and structuring a dialogue among farmers and regulators to improve knowledge and compliance.

Mr Redmond said that the technique has been successful in helping over Infectious Salmon Anaemia in Chile and has helped in rebuilding the Chilean aquaculture sector.

And he added that he hoped that similar zoning practices could help with Early Mortality Syndrome in shrimp in Viet Nam and South East Asia.