Indian shrimp farming has been witnessing the rise and fall in production over the past three decades, be it Penaeus monodon or Litopenaeus vannamei. Nevertheless, India stands high as one of the top shrimp producers in the world. It is very vital to understand the nature and its carrying capacity, which nowadays the entire industry as well as farmers are getting a clear view and are moving towards revival of the black tiger in India via introduction of specific pathogen free (SPF) P. monodon broodstock.
However, just bringing success in the black tiger production is not going to bring a concrete solution for the farmers or for the Indian shrimp industry. It is equally important to understand the supply and demand alongside its production. More importantly, it is to understand the pros and cons of culture and choosing wisely the best species for culture.
This presentation will focus on understanding the world market for black tiger, its supply and demand, the importance of indigenous domestication of SPF P. monodon broodstock via broodstock multiplication centres (BMC) which can bring down production cost and culturing the shrimp in areas where creek-based vannamei farming is failing or failure of vannamei farming due to other reasons. Ultimately, the resurgence of black tiger farming will be of no use if we fail to understand the market well. The new mantra for shrimp farming across the entire world including India should be “find stability over success”.
As the demand for seafood continues to grow, the shrimp aquaculture industry faces significant environmental and social challenges. At the same time, more and more consumers are becoming aware of the environment and start demanding sustainable products. To address these challenges and ensure sustainable practices, the adoption of Life Cycle Assessment (LCA) is becoming more common. LCA quantifies the environmental impact of a product throughout its life across various environmental impacts such as climate change, land use, water use, and eutrophication, allowing for a comprehensive evaluation of the environmental impacts associated with shrimp aquaculture.
In this presentation, we will dive into the application of Life Cycle Assessment (LCA) in shrimp aquaculture value chains, emphasizing its importance in driving sustainable practices. LCA plays a vital role in identifying environmental hotspots and uncovering opportunities for effective mitigation strategies, contributing to informed decision-making. Additionally, it opens doors to eco-certification programs and premium markets, where the demand for sustainable products is rapidly growing.
We will explore case studies within the shrimp aquaculture industry, revealing the positive outcomes achieved through the integration of LCA. Demonstrating how LCA can be harnessed as a powerful tool to help shape a sustainable shrimp aquaculture industry.
High priced inputs (i.e., feeds) and decreasing final product prices are creating a perfect storm situation for many shrimp culture operations. These enterprises need to focus on reducing production costs and improving their profitability. While there has been considerable focus in terms of research and development on improving the cost-effectiveness of feeds, how efficiently these high value inputs are used at the farm level has been the subject of relatively few efforts.
Rearing animals in an aquatic environment greatly complicates monitoring of growth, standing biomass and feed consumption. A great deal of attention must be paid to the feeding since feed delivered, but not consumed, cannot be recovered or even appropriately quantified. The feeding of crustaceans is even more complicated due to their mode of feeding and feeding behaviour.
Analysis of data from commercial production lots in different regions indicates feeding management is seriously deficient in many shrimp culture operations. Farm employees appear to rely on poor (biased) and relatively archaic approaches to estimate inventory, standing biomass, and appetite of the animals and determine daily feed allocation. The amount of feed distributed appears to frequently be in excess of what the animals truly require. Overfeeding leads to feed wastage, a pure economic loss, and greater waste outputs, which can have dire consequence on water quality and the development of water-borne pathogens and survival of the animals. Conversely, delivering less feed than what is required by the animals to express their growth potential can also be considered an economic loss (opportunity cost) and may greatly affect profitability of the enterprise.
Technological solutions, from smart feeding systems to biomass estimators to production and feeding management software, have been developed and are being implemented on shrimp culture operations. These technological solutions may usher a new era of smart feeding management for shrimp culture operations. Examples of effective use of technology to improve feed management will be presented.
From 2021 to 2022, farmed shrimp production will continue to grow at around +11%. Market demand is also expected to grow at around +13%. Among the main exporters, Ecuador, with exports rising from around 850,000 tonnes in 2021 to 1,065,000 tonnes in 2022 and Vietnam, have recorded the highest growth rates in 2022. At the same time, the cost of aquaculture inputs (feed, fuel and transport) rose considerably in 2022, causing difficulties for shrimp farmers around the world. From September 2022 onwards, shrimp prices in international trade began to weaken because of increased supply, reaching low levels in October, often making it uneconomic for many farmers to continue production, particularly in Asia. In India and Southeast Asia, shrimp farmers have reduced stocking of ponds and processors have reduced processing for export due to falling market prices.
Most of the world’s farmed shrimp production is made up of Litopenaeus vannamei, which is now considered a commodity, which explains the fragility of prices in a highly competitive market.The main options for avoiding this vulnerability are either to reduce production costs or to differentiate products.
The main production cost item is feed. It is therefore advisable either to work on feed formulation by increasing digestibility to reduce costs while maintaining performance, or to optimise the conversion rate by improving, or even working on, both axes. The use of a feed with a lower crude protein content but with improved digestibility thanks to the addition of proteases is an option that has already been demonstrated. We can also work on formulation by using less digestible but less expensive raw materials where the digestibility is optimised by the use of appropriate enzymes.
Shrimp aquaculture has experienced remarkable growth as a major global industry, necessitating a thorough understanding of the health and nutritional requirements for these crustaceans. To ensure optimal production performance, shrimp farmers must employ effective feeding strategies, utilizing high-quality feeds that meet the specific dietary needs of shrimp at various growth stages. Additionally, understanding the digestive physiology and feeding behavior of shrimp is crucial for developing appropriate feeding protocols.
Diseases occur when the animal, environment and pathogen are challenged or put out of balance. This results in a state in which normal biological functions are disturbed or altered at cellular, tissue, organ or whole organism level. While it’s important to identify the causative agents and its etiology, for a farmer, what really matters is the impact the disease has on the farm’s production potential.
Functional nutritional additives, encompass a wide range of substances, including probiotics, prebiotics, immunostimulants, enzymes, antioxidants, organic acids and phytobiotics. They have gained importance in playing a critical role as valuable tools for enhancing shrimp health and performance. The utilization of functional additives offers numerous benefits, including enhancing, disease resistance, immune function, and overall productivity.
Together we will explore techniques and technologies which are unlocking the microbiome and providing health insights. Focusing on algae, microbiome health, histopathology and bioindicators, we will explore how to apply and develop solutions that can diagnose problems before they become critical, and guide management decisions.