On-land fish production in closed recirculating aquaculture systems (RAS) is a promising, but still under-exploited possibility of producing protein. This session looked into possibilities and approaches of creating added value in RAS aquaculture. It was moderated by Jesper Heldbo, General Secretary for the Danish business association AquaCircle.

Adrian A. Bischoff-Lang, senior researcher at Rostock University’s aquaculture and sea-ranching department, presented the project InnoAquaTech. As RAS aquaculture does not (yet) play a big role in the southern part of the Baltic Sea region, one of the main aims of this project is to promote this form of technologies in the South Baltic area. The project is inter alia working on developing a decision support tool for investors to get preliminary evaluations on the feasibility of selected RAS systems.

Peter Zeller, CEO of FRESH Corporation AG, presented the business case of FRESH which is operating a commercial large-scale sea water RAS system in Völklingen, Germany. One of the conclusions from his talk was that large-scale urban fish farming can provide solutions for carbon footprint and reduced energy consumption. According to Peter, traceability, real-time farm monitoring as well as functioning logistics are key components for economic success of this type of aquaculture.

Peter Zeller, CEO of FRESH Corporation AG, presented the business case of FRESH which is operating a commercial large-scale sea water RAS system in Völklingen, Germany. One of the conclusions from his talk was that large-scale urban fish farming can provide solutions for carbon footprint and reduced energy consumption. According to Peter, traceability, real-time farm monitoring as well as functioning logistics are key components for economic success of this type of aquaculture.

In his talk, Jonathan Trent, Director at OMEGA Global Initiative, stressed that innovation at the food, water, energy nexus can best be created by intelligently combining different production systems into a holistic ecosystem. In his vision, RAS aquaculture could be a part of a system linking fish and microalgae production with agriculture and renewable energy production.

Valentin Eckart, project coordinator at BioCon Valley, concluded from the workshop that the further development of integrated aquaculture systems needs to go hand in hand with social awareness raising activities. Citizens, consumers and producers need to be taken on board from the very beginning and there needs to be an open dialogue on the possibilities and challenges of aquaculture. Besides this, existing legislation criteria, which are regulating the access to and use of water, but also the supply with cheap energy are needed to be defined in RAS-specific approach to improve the competitiveness of such products.

Workshop's presentations:

OMEGA: you bet your RAS by J. Trent

Tags: Interreg South Baltic, BioConValley, aquaculture, RAS, InnoAquaTech, conference, Baltic Sea Region, Germany, Schleswig-Holstein

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