India’s Kerala state is eyeing aquaculture as a means to increase fish production and counter its dwindling wild fishery stock that has been caused by marine pollution and overfishing.
Kerala Governor P Sathasivam said that stricter measures are needed to protect marine biodiversity and state needs to promote aquaculture as an alternative means of increasing fish production in the state, the New Indian Express reported.
Kerala, which has 210 species of fish and 53 species endemic to the region, is looking to increase its fish production in the next three years to 80,000 metric tons, from the current production of 40,000 metric tons.
During the National Fish Farmers’ Day event in July where Sathasivam made his remarks, the State Fisheries Management Society (FIRMA), the Central Institute of Fisheries Technology (CIFT), and the National Institute of Fisheries Post-Harvest Technology (NIFPHT) displayed live koi carp, gold fish, angel fish and a freshwater bony fish, arowana. Apart from live fish, the event also displayed fish and fish-based products, including cutlets with fish fillings.
On the back of the festival, the state government in Kerala has recently launched three-day fishing festival in Kochi , a coastal city where new farming ventures using fish cage culture and aquaponics, have recently started up.
The exhibition was organized by CIFT, Central Marine Fisheries Research Institute (CMFRI), Central Institute of Fisheries Nautical and Engineering Training (CIFNET) and the Marine Products Export Development Authority (MPEDA).