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How a recirculating aquaculture system (RAS) works will be just one of the things students in North Carolina can learn through a mobile aquaculture lab being built in the state.

Project proponents North Carolina Sea Grant (NCSG) and Carteret Community College (CCC) expect the lab to promote aquaculture education, training and employment opportunities in the state.

The lab, which was scheduled for completion by the end of June, is part of a larger project called Building the Marine Aquaculture Career Pipeline. As part of the project, NCSG has taken part in several events where they brought touch tanks and animals to schools. But CCC Aquaculture Department Chair David Cerino says this new lab will be on another level.

“It’s a flatbed trailer on which we are going to put a touch tank that can transport animals and quickly set it up so those animals can go into smaller trays for interaction. There will be a RAS system that will have fish in it, with all the components of a RAS system so we can explain what each part does and highlight that aspect of aquaculture.”

The mobile lab will also display different types of gear and information on different aquaculture techniques as well as monitors for visual presentations. The modular lab can have new elements added, as necessary.

“I do a lot of work in high schools in North Carolina to educate students about the opportunities in marine aquaculture,” says Jane Harrison, Coastal Economics Specialist with NCSG. “I can go in and give a power point presentation, but if they can’t see what these creatures really look like and get their hands on them, it’s not as effective.”

Another aspect of the project is developing curriculum for teaching about aquaculture. Harrison says that she hopes the mobile lab might inspire some teachers to create permanent aquaculture labs at their schools.
Hatchery International and Virginia Tech will jointly host RAStech 2019, a conference and trade show focused on recirculating aquaculture systems (RAS), on May 13 – 14, 2019 at the Capital Hilton in Washington, D.C.

Formerly the International Conference on Recirculating Aquaculture (ICRA), RAStech 2019 will feature keynote presentations and concurrent sessions discussing case studies, developments and advances in RAS and its future in the aquaculture industry.

Partnering with Hatchery International, backed by Annex Business Media’s event management expertise, ensures the continued success and growth of this event.

“We are happy to partner with Virginia Tech on this great initiative. The advancements in RAS technologies make this event a significant gathering of great minds and leaders in the aquaculture industry,” says Scott Jamieson, group publisher at Annex Business Media, which owns Hatchery International. “Sustainability is the way forward for aquaculture and RAStech will be a venue for sharing ideas and best practices for RAS applications.”

“RAStech 2019 will continue the ICRA’s vision of providing aquaculture professionals a resource for learning and sharing knowledge about RAS,” says David Kuhn, associate professor in the aquaculture research and extension programs, department of food science and technology at Virginia Tech. “Hatchery International is an ideal partner for us to accomplish this goal.”

For registration information visit www.ras-tec.com.



A technology platform that enables farms and hatcheries to track and manage their aquatic populations “with greater speed, accuracy and insight” is available from XpertSea.

The Canadian company says XpertSea’s platform uses artificial intelligence and computer vision to count and size early-stage aquatic organisms such as shrimp larvae and live feed.

The XpertCount is a smart IoT (internet of things) device that connects to a portal where customers can access data and analytics from any device, anywhere.

As of 2017, XpertSea’s customers in 48 countries have counted more than 17 billion organisms and uploaded over 100,000 counting and sizing sessions to the data portal, said the company. It recently found investors in Obvious Ventures, Aqua-Spark, and Real Ventures, which together raised C$10 million in Series A financing.

"This investment will help XpertSea take the guesswork out of aquaculture inventory management, which will drive profits for aquaculture producers and deliver positive environmental returns for our planet,” said Valerie Robitaille, CEO and co-founder of XpertSea.

“Precision aquaculture technology is the key to bringing transparency to transactions and standardizing practices across the industry, which benefits everyone along the aquaculture food chain,” she added.
How a recirculating aquaculture system (RAS) works will be just one of the things students in North Carolina can learn through a mobile aquaculture lab currently being built in the state.

Project proponents North Carolina Sea Grant (NCSG) and Carteret Community College (CCC) expect the lab to promote aquaculture education, training and employment opportunities in the state.

The lab, which is scheduled for completion by the end of June, is part of a larger project called Building the Marine Aquaculture Career Pipeline. As part of the project, NCSG has taken part in several events where they brought touch tanks and animals to schools. But CCC Aquaculture Department Chair David Cerino says this new lab will be on another level.

“It’s a flatbed trailer on which we are going to put a touch tank that can transport animals and quickly set it up so those animals can go into smaller trays for interaction. There will be a RAS system that will have fish in it, with all the components of a RAS system so we can explain what each part does and highlight that aspect of aquaculture.”

The mobile lab will also display different types of gear and information on different aquaculture techniques as well as monitors for visual presentations. The modular lab can have new elements added, as necessary.

“I do a lot of work in high schools in North Carolina to educate students about the opportunities in marine aquaculture,” says Jane Harrison, Coastal Economics Specialist with NCSG. “I can go in and give a power point presentation, but if they can’t see what these creatures really look like and get their hands on them, it’s not as effective.”

Another aspect of the project is developing curriculum for teaching about aquaculture. Harrison says that she hopes the mobile lab might inspire some teachers to create permanent aquaculture labs at their schools.
With the help of over $30,000 in travel grants, 14 students from universities around the world will showcase their research at the 8th International Symposium on Aquatic Animal Health (ISAAH), which will be held September 2-6, 2018, in Charlottetown, PEI.

ISAAH, held every four years, is co-hosted this year by the Atlantic Veterinary College (AVC), the PEI BioAlliance, and the American Fisheries Society-Fish Health Section. This will be only the second time that it has been hosted in Canada since the inaugural conference in Vancouver, British Columbia, in 1988.

The travel grants are provided by the Fish Health Section of the American Fisheries Society and Canada Excellence Research Chair in Aquatic Epidemiology located at AVC. The students will present research on topics including emerging diseases in fish and biosecurity implications; the effects of the ornamental aquarium fish trade; injuries and disease in Pacific salmon; and pathogens and parasites affecting various species like wild and farmed fish, crustaceans, manatees, and amphibians.

“This conference is an excellent opportunity for the students to present their research and to network with world leaders in aquatic animal health,” said Dr David Groman, local chair of the conference and Section Head for Aquatic Diagnostic Services at AVC.

Early bird registration for the symposium ends on July 13. For more information, visit https://isaah2018.com/

As important as having the specialized skillset, an aquaculture diver should also have the temperament to get the job done, writes Kelly N. Korol.
IFFO, The Marine Ingredients Organisation has appointed Petter Martin Johannessen as director general.
Steve Summerfelt has joined the first commercial-scale Atlantic salmon RAS facility in the US.

“My experience at the Freshwater Institute has been incredible. We have overcome many of the biological, technical, and economic challenges that fish farmers must overcome when using RAS. Many challenges remain for commercial producers using RAS and the Freshwater Institute team and facilities are still well prepared to develop solutions to overcome these challenges,” Summerfelt told Aquaculture North America (ANA).

“The massive expansion of the land-based salmon-trout farming industry is actually quite intimidating because I’m not convinced that all of the players have the technology and experience to do this right. Yet, with this transition, I will be able to help Superior Fresh – the leader in commercial land-based production of Atlantic salmon in the USA – sustainably expand production of both fish and produce,” he continued.

“I look forward to continuing to innovate and optimize RAS and aquaponic production while working for industry. This will also allow me to continue providing the very best technology to Superior Fresh and hopefully leave a legacy of success.”

Aquasend, a subsidiary of Precision Measurement Engineering, introduced at Aquaculture America 2018 its new device for monitoring dissolved oxygen, called clearDOT logger.
With help from a newly launched management software, oyster farmers can now access what’s happening throughout their operation at any time.
Animal feed producer ADM Animal Nutrition has appointed Dr John Bowzer as lead research scientist in aquaculture.

Bowzer is “tasked with strengthening ADM’s commitment to developing ingredients and products that deliver value to the rapidly growing aquaculture industry,” the company said in a statement.

He will also lead ADM’s efforts to expand its research capabilities through development of an aquaculture wet lab, it added.

Bowzer received his doctorate in zoology from Southern Illinois University in 2014. “He brings significant technical expertise in fish and shrimp nutrition and physiology to ADM Animal Nutrition,” said ADM

China is not one to get left behind as a new era in fish farming begins.
Hoopers Island Oyster Co of Maryland has been named as distributor for Australia’s Hexcyl Systems. The Hexcyl system is designed for the Australian long-line method of oyster growing and was awarded a 2017 Australian Good Design Award.

“We were looking to change methods of growing oysters from the bottom-cage method we were using to transition to a better quality oyster,” says Hoopers Island managing partner Ricky Fitzhugh. “We thought the Hexcyl was a better quality product. We started to order some of the equipment and through a representative coming here to see us and seeing what we were about and how we were involved in the equipment side of it, they thought it would be a good fit for us to distribute them as well.”

Hoopers Island manager of equipment and product sales Sean Grizzell says the Hexcyl system’s simplicity is one of its best features. It takes very little time to assemble the system. “Each product in the market has some sort of assembly required. No jigs nor other tools needed. It allows you to be efficient putting it together.”

At 25 liters, the larger basket size of the Hexcyl system also allows flexibility to producers, says Grizzell. “You can change the stocking density to the level of quality of oyster you want. You can stock them heavy or you can stock them light, depending on what kind of market you’re in.”

An aquaculture veteran was honoured with the first Atlantic Canada Aquaculture Award at a gala event in St Andrews, New Brunswick in October. Skretting International’s Gary Taylor was recognized for his contribution to the success and growth of salmon farming on Canada’s east coast. Taylor, a resident of St Stephen, praised the salmon farming industry when he accepted the award.

“I tell young people, ‘Boy you’ve picked a good industry,” he told the crowd of more than 100 industry representatives from around the world who attended the Atlantic Canada Fish Farmers Association’s 30th anniversary gala. “It’s something to be proud of. Everyone in this room deserves a hand for the great industry we have developed.”

Taylor graduated from the Aquaculture Technician Program at the New Brunswick Community College in St. Andrews in 1981. He immediately began his career in Dark Harbour Grand Manan, where he became the first site manager in New Brunswick. In 1988 he joined feed company Skretting International.

“We have such a great industry here. It’s a story to tell. We’ve got the best protein in the world that’s the least intrusive on the environment,” he said.

Larry Ingalls, ACFFA Chair, said Taylor’s professionalism, commitment, hard work and passion for the industry deserved to be recognized. “Gary has been involved with many innovations as the industry has evolved to what it is today, one of the most significant economic drivers in Atlantic Canada…. We’re proud that he is the inaugural recipient of this award.”

Seafood and produce packaging manufacturer Seaca Packing and A.A. Childs Brokerage have teamed up with Packaging Products Corporation (PPC) in New Bedford and Miami to further expand the market reach of their plastic corrugated boxes for seafood along the entire East Coast and beyond.

SeaCa partnered with A.A. Childs Brokerage in 2016 to introduce their 100-percent recyclable alternative line to the northeast seafood markets.

The latest union comes at a time when plastic corrugated boxes are gaining support in the seafood industry as both a 100-percent recyclable alternative to wax and offering cost savings abilities along the entire shipping chain with its lightweight yet durable construction, said the companies in a statement.

“The industry is now asking questions about plastic corrugated, which is good,” said Ted Heidenreich, President of PPC. “Our reach and experience in packaging for the seafood industry allows us to introduce the many advantages of plastic corrugated when compared to wax and foam boxes so seafood shippers can make informed decisions.”

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