Aquaculture! It’s like farming except in the water, obviously, but not a lot of people know that aquaculture shares similar concerns with regular agriculture. It’s the farming of seafood, and it’s been going on in Canada since before confederation.

On this RealAg LIVE! Kara Oosterhuis is joined by Cyr Couturier from the Marine Institute at Memorial University.

RealAg LIVE! streams every weekday at 3 pm E on Youtube, Facebook, and Twitter!

SUMMARY

  • 25,000 farm families and seafood farmers
  • $5 billion of GDP
  • Oysters, char, sturgeon, trout, so many
  • Land-based production (in water, of course), and in lakes and oceans, too
  • Similar concerns to terrestrial land — carbon, diseases, land use, feed, consumer opinion, etc.
  • Advancements in genetics, too
  • Concerns: labour force issues, for sure, though it is more year-end
  • Even precision ag/aquaculture! Fin fish, using AI (artificial intelligence), for feed
  • Improvements for boats and equipment
  • Replacing fish meal and oil, with soy, insects, and camelina
  • Cargill is big into it too
  • Yes, fish are livestock! There is a code of practice, too.
  • Is there a roundtable for aquaculture, like there is for cattle and crops?
  • Yes, sustainability is a top discussion too
  • Also seaweed production
  • How big an issue are diseases and the risk to wild populations?
  • Sea lice — only a big issue in salmon farming
  • Cleaner fish! Literally clean the fish
  • Have to manage for health, of course
  • Genetic modification in aquaculture, vaccines and some technologies
  • There is approved salmon
  • Labour force is tight at processing, for sure
  • Similar to livestock processing, it’s a difficult role to fill
  • But it is year round
  • What about automation? Great fit
  • Cyr was also named to the top 50 in ag!

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