To Secure Aquaculture’s Future We Must Ensure Fish Feeds Are Sustainably Produced

The next 20 years are, possibly, the most important in the history of agriculture. To feed our growing population agriculture must produce more and do it with fewer inputs. Of all the animals grown for food, fish, by far, make the smallest demand on input resources. Still in all, as aquaculture expands we need to ensure fish diets come from the most sustainable sources.

Aquaculture is eminently productive.  Per acre, it produces much more food than terrestrial agriculture.  And, with 9 billion of us at the dinner table in 2040, farmed fish will play a larger role in human nutrition.  For aquaculture to ascend to its proper place in our food future, we need to ensure what we feed fish comes from the most responsible and sustainable sources.  A recent meeting of seafood industry leaders, the conservation community, academics and the media, convened by the environmental NGO, SeaWeb, addressed key needs for aquaculture’s expansion. I had the opportunity to moderate a panel discussion on the challenges we face in developing new ingredients for farmed fish diets.  Five expert panelists named the one single largest impediment they see between us and a plentiful supply of sustainable aquaculture feeds. In a column on the Global Aquaculture Advocate Dane Klinger and I summarized the panel’s thoughts on what we must do to ensure we feed the fish that feed us in the best possible ways.  You can read it here.