News: Southeast Asia
USSEC – Southeast Asia (SEA), led by Lukas Manomaitis, USSEC Aquaculture Program Lead Technical Consultant – SEA; Levy Loreto L. Manalac, USSEC Technical Consultant, Aquaculture – Philippines; Pamudi, USSEC Technical Consultant, Aquaculture – Indonesia; and Hsiang Pin Lan, USSEC Asia Marine Specialist, Aquaculture – SEA, together with international speakers helped the Philippines to develop a sustainable, high-volume, export-focused marine fish aquaculture sector in a workshop conducted on May 8 at the Marco Polo Ortigas Hotel in Pasig City, Philippines.
According to Mr. Manomaitis, USSEC has been working with the marine fish aquaculture sector in Philippines for the past few years and anticipates that the current industry will become larger scale and will produce a large volume of marine fish products. In order for this to succeed, the industry will have to focus on extra-regional sales of product and not primarily on intra-regional trade (national or SEA regional sales). This workshop aimed to inform, educate, and discuss important topics as the Southeast Asian marine fish aquaculture industry starts to develop larger scale production.
During the workshop the invited resource speakers presented the following topics:
- Roy C. Ortega, OIC of IFAD of DA-BFAR, discussed the Philippines Fishery government current policy and future policy plans for marine fish aquaculture.
- Manomaitis provided an introduction to USSEC and discussed the seminar topic and workshop program.
- Matt Brooker, business development manager of The Fishin’ Company in the U.S., presented requirements for a company’s entry into a marine fish export market including how a species market is developed or expanded (if already existing), format, volume, quality, certifications, and challenges and opportunities.
- Elsie Tech, vice president South Luzon, Hi-VAP Inc. and technical consultant of Palawan Aquaculture Corp., discussed and introduced HI-VAP Inc. and how they see the marine fish industry in the next five years.
- Pamudi gave an introduction to the ideas of standards setting and certification bodies for marine fish export market.
- Isidor Yu, farm assurer, GlobalGAP, discussed the importance of standards and certifications for aquaculture products and for export products in particular.
- Lourdes Tanco, managing director of MIDA Trade Ventures International Inc., talked about how Philippine marine fish producers may need to link to the processing and export industry for smooth development of the industry.
This workshop was highlighted by the four different sectors in four breakout sessions where they discussed and addressed the following:
- Import related: What is the best way to link to markets, identify products and encourage buyers to look at SEA marine fish production?
- Certification related: What are the key concerns with regards to standards/certifications that may impact a move to an export marine fish aquaculture industry?
- Government: What actions in the short/medium/long term are needed to support an export marine fish aquaculture industry?
- Industry actions: What changes need to occur within the current industry to move to export volumes? How will feeds be a part of this?
The workshop was attended by 36 marine fish farmers and company, aquaculture feedmills, seafood importers and exporters, Bureau of Fisheries and Aquatic Resources and other government agencies, members of Philippine Association of Fish Producers Inc. (PAFPI), Philippine Milkfish Industry Group Inc. (PhilMIG), High Value Aqua Philippines Inc. (Hi-VAP), fish cage manufacturers, and other aquaculture stakeholders in Philippines.
USSEC – Southeast Asia conducted in-house seminars and visits to several aquaculture feedmills in the Philippines to address different issues in their feedmill productions and aquaculture feed formulations from February 21 – 23.
Levy Loreto L. Manalac, USSEC Technical Consultant, Aquaculture – Philippines and Mark Newman, USSEC Feedmill and Nutrition Consultant, led this effort. In order to properly address each aqua feedmill issue, USSEC requested pre-questionnaires from each feedmill to guide USSEC during the in-house seminar.
Mr. Newman presented and discussed extrusion principles and equipment in aquaculture feed production; feeds and feeding management; and milkfish and tilapia nutrition, including the use of U.S. Soy products to reduce the amount of fishmeal and fish oil in aquaculture feeds at the Davao South Feedmill Corporation (Vitarich Feed Corp. third party toll milling partner), Philippine Foremost Milling Corp., and CJ Phils.
At Santeh Feeds Corp. Mr. Newman presented and discussed nutrition and feeds for marine shrimp, processing sinking feeds for shrimp, and current manufacturing trends.
38 feedmill staff, Q&A staff, and managers from four different aquaculture feedmills in Philippines attended the in-house seminar.
About 15,000 of the 23,000 floating net cages (FNCs) in Jatiluhur Reservoir in Purwakarta Regency, West Java, Indonesia began to be removed early last month and will continue to be removed until February 2018. The remaining cages will then be partially removed until the end of next year. An excessive number of cages, up to six times the allowable number, has been blamed for threatening the water supply for Jakarta and Java-Bali’s power supply. Purwakarta Regent Deddy Mulyadi initiated this action.
FNC aquaculture, which mostly produces common carp, started in the reservoir in 1988 and has been a dilemmatic industry in Purwakarta. With an annual production of 70,000 tons per year, involving 3,636 farm households and with a potential estimated tax of $90.2 million (USD) per year, the industry claimed to boost the local economy. However, among those cages, only 3,000 FNCs were officially registered and the registrations expired last year, while the rest were illegal, threatening the water supply and Java-Bali’s power supply.
Although many fish farmers complained about the action, they do not have any right to reject or sue the local government because they established the cages illegally and were instructed to remove them a couple years ago. The farmers now need alternative jobs to make a living. The local government has proposed that the reservoir could be an attractive tourist water spot, involving most of the former cage fish farmers to manage the spot without disrupting the reservoir’s sustainability.
USSEC’s aquaculture program has considered the Jatiluhur and other Indonesian reservoirs for sustainable, environmental-friendly aquaculture, farming the land and sustaining the sea and other water bodies.
USSEC, together with the U.S. Grains Council (USGC), and the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s (USDA) Foreign Agricultural Service (FAS), organized the 2017 Asia Grain Transportation Conference (GTC) in Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam.
Mary Tarnowka, U.S. Consul General, U.S. Embassy, Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam, officially opened this year’s GTC at the Sheraton Saigon. The event received its highest turnout to date: over 230 participants from across the region and beyond, with 12 nationalities representing around 100 companies. A large delegation of U.S. Soy family members and stakeholders attended, comprised of soy grower leaders, U.S. exporters, speakers, and guests.
The North and South Dakota Qualified State Soybean Boards (QSSB) were the main sponsors of this year’s conference, represented by Mike Appert, vice chairman of the North Dakota Soybean Council, and Joshua Kayser, South Dakota Soybean Association director.
Mr. Kayser gave a presentation on “U.S. Growers Perspectives: U.S. Soybean Crop Production Outlook,” while Mr. Appert assisted in co-chairing the “U.S. Soy Supply – Ensuring Quality & Sustainability through the Value Chain” session during the Southeast Asia Soy Symposium, another USSEC major regional event that is strategically held back to back with the GTC (see following story).
A reception was held for sixteen U.S. grower leaders from eight states and other U.S. Soy Family representatives, which provided a positive message to the participants and also helped to draw the connection between U.S. growers with their destination markets even closer.
As a result of the collective efforts of the organizers, sponsors, supporters, U.S. Soy Industry representatives, and presenters that provided their expertise and insights, 92 percent of 132 respondents polled indicated that this year’s conference experience was between “high value” and “very high value.” The majority of participants rated the speakers highly with over 93 percent indicating their experience from “good” to “very good.” The presentations were broad ranging, yet in-depth with relevant discussions about key Asian markets, the global outlook for grain and soy, trends in ocean freight, and supply chains for food and agri-products. This year, the organizers introduced two special forum sessions, the “U.S. Ag Producers Forum” and “U.S. Ag Exporters Forum,” which were also very well received and attracted strong participation and responses from the participants. Since introducing the e-platform, Pigeonhole, five years ago to manage the questions and answer sessions for these events, the quality of participation and interaction has been outstanding.
Finally, as with every Grain Transportation Conference, the organizers put together a major success criterion, which is marked by the amount of U.S. agricultural products that this important U.S. ag marketing platform has been able to generate for U.S. Soy stakeholders. Based on written evaluations submitted, over 1.1 million metric tons (MMT) of U.S. agricultural products were traded or negotiated at this year’s event. About 600,000 metric tons (MT) of U.S. soybeans and soybean meal were reportedly transacted or equivalent to about 25 million bushels of soybeans. In addition, over half a million metric ton (MMT) of U.S. corn, distiller’s dried grains with solubles (DDGS), and wheat were also transacted at the conference.
Vietnam is one of the world’s fastest growing markets for soy because of rapid economic growth and rising population. I gave a presentation this morning on the global soy supply and demand situation. This afternoon I moderated a panel discussion of U.S. farmers attending the meeting. I am very impressed with those attending and with the positives happening in this country. Vietnam ostensibly remains a communist country, but you would not realize it because of all of the capitalism happening here. Great, growing market for U.S. Soy.
-USSEC consultant John Baize
The organizers sincerely thank the North Dakota Soybean Council, South Dakota Soybean Research and Promotion Council, Minnesota Soybean Research and Promotion Council, Kentucky Soybean Association, corporate sponsors, and industry supporters for making the Asia Grain Tranportation Conference a resounding success.
The 12th Southeast Asia Soy Sympoisum (SFS), organized by USSEC Southeast Asia (SEA), was held on March 23 and 24 in Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam. The 12th Symposium was attended by 115 participants from SEA, the U.S., and Japan, comprising key soy food and beverage industry personnel, soybean traders, and related stakeholders. The one-day symposium was preceded by a half-day invitation-only workshop on Enhancing Soy Products Innovations to Meet Health and Market Trends, for a select group of soy food and beverage producers from the region.
As with previous series of this annual 1.5 day regional soy food event, the back-to-back strategic arrangement with the SEA Grains Transportation Conference (GTC), enabled the cross participation of attendees, and the benefits of the high level presence of U.S. Soy grower leaders as well as the support of several qualified state soybean boards (QSSBs) and food grade soybean suppliers, who took the opportunity to meet and network with regional customers and producers, and to establish trade deals as well as gain updates on the markets development in the region.
Collectively accounting for 25 percent of the world’s total soyfood consumption, ASEAN (Association of Southeast Asian Nations, the group of 10 SEA countries) is also one of the largest importer of U.S. soybeans for food uses, with an estimated 2.5 million metric tons (MMT) out of the 3.6 MMT per year imported into the region designated for soy food and beverage utilization. Of this amount, Indonesia alone accounted for close to 2 MMT of the regional import, almost all targeted for the domestic production and consumption of tempe and tofu.
Additionally, SEA is a developing market for U.S. food grade identity preserved (IP) soybeans, with about 40,000 – 50,000 MT being imported annually in recent years, to meet the growing demand of quality soyfood for the modern trade food and beverage industry. The joint GTC and SFS events were important platform for U.S. suppliers to build business networks and negotiate trade deals, as gleaned from the pooled survey on transaction negotiated reported in the GTC story.
Gerald Smith, Senior Agriculture Attache at the U.S. Consulate General, Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam, delivered the opening speech and welcomed the delegates to the 2017 Soy Symposium with the theme of “Soy Insight – Sustainability, Nutrition and Innovation.” The symposium aimed to provide the status and latest updates on U.S. food use and specialty soybeans suppliers, sustainable farm practices and technological solutions, in addition to information on soy health benefits, products trends and innovations that spur soybean consumption and market growth in this important regional market for U.S. Soy.
The first session on “U.S. Soy Supply – Ensuring Quality and Sustainability Through the Value Chain” was co-chaired by Mike Appert, vice chairman of the North Dakota Soybean Council and Timothy Loh, USSEC Regional Director – SEA. The three speakers from the U.S. included Will McNair, USSEC Stakeholder Relations Manager, who presented on the outlook of U.S. food soybean supplies and shared how through the dependable production of U.S. food soybean and the U.S. Soy Sustainability Assurance Protocol (SSAP), importers of U.S. soybeans and foods are able to create more value for themselves by continuing to differentiate from their competitors. USSEC director Aaron Skyberg of SK Food International and member of the Northern Food Grade Soybean Association (NFGSA), shared the quality traits and Identify Preserved (IP) soybean supply system that catered to the needs and target soybean characteristics sought by soy food and beverage producers through a stringent on farm practices, supply and transportation through the container trade that ensure the identity and quality preservation in delivery to the customers through the containers trade, as reinforced in the presentation by Lucas Blaustein of Consolidated Grains and Barge.
Dr. Anne Bridges of the American Association of Cereal Chemists (AACC) International and Professor Paul Teng of the Nanyang Technological University, Singapore, during their presentations at the second session of the symposium, emphasized that a sustainable food supply is critical to feed the growing global population and at the same time respond to demands for healthy and nutritious food. Plant breeders work with multiple technologies to provide new advanced crop options for increased yields, excellent environmental management, adaptations to climate change, as well as improved use of insecticides and herbicides and attention to quality attributes. Knowledge and adoption of these technologies, once approved, would help ensure a sufficient, safe, and sustainable agricultural global supply chain.
The session ended with an update on the status of food use soybean markets in SEA, presented by USSEC Human Utilization Manager, Dr. Dady Maskar from Indonesia, on behalf of Boon Yee Yeong, Senior Technical Consultant, Human Utilization, USSEC SEA. The presentation shared data from the region, which points to continuing growth in demand for soy for food uses. U.S. Soy has been recognized to play an important role and contribution to the nutritional well being of large population sectors who consume soyfood and beverage on daily basis. With soybean production of less than a million metric tons in key SEA countries, sustainable food security in the near future in ASEAN will continue to depend on managing the balance in food supply between self-production and imports from outside the region.
The third and fourth sessions of the symposium comprised the remaining 8 of the total 14 papers in this symposium. The sessions’ topics ranged from current soyfood trends, scientific updates and consumer perceptions on soy, and how these factors confluence to influence purchase. Presenters shared experience on how the soy industry responds to their specific market requirements through innovative approaches and product innovation. Examples from two successful market leaders in Singapore and Vietnam, as well as a sharing of market status and development in two countries outside of SEA, Japan and India namely, were among the very interesting and valuable stories of experience sharing.
The focus program with the diverse topics that covered the pertinent interests of the target audience earned a high appreciation and positive evaluation from the survey conducted among the attendees. Of the 71 returned survey questionnairs, more than 90 percent rated the program to be of high value and relevant to their work, and 85 percent were in positive agreement to the overall statements on both the instrinsic characteristics and extrinsic characteristics of U.S. Soy and soy protein. For those producers or traders not currently purchasing U.S. Soy, the knowledge gap on the U.S. Soy Advantage was shown to be narrowed after the participants attended the Symposium. 24 of the regional respondents in the trade indicated they are currently buyers or users of U.S. Soy with another 10 indicating that they plan to purchase U.S. Soy within the next 6 months.
Besides the full day symposium held on March 24, several of the U.S. Soy grower leaders and food soybean suppliers were invited to visit the newly opened state-of-the art soymilk plant of Vinasoy near Ho Chi Minh City. Vinasoy is the largest soymilk producer in Vietnam. While local soybeans have been their main source of supply, they have started exploring importing food soybeans from the U.S. and Canada.
The half day workshop, “Enhancing Soy Products Innovation to Meet Current Nutrition and Market Trends,” was held on the afternoon of March 23 for a select group of soy food and beverage producers, facilitated by experts in the field of nutrition, product development, and marketing. At the end of the workshop, three innovative product concepts were developed and proposed by the participants which showcased the versatility of soy in meeting target health requirements and consumer interest in innovative soy products.
USSEC’s aquaculture program in Southeast Asia is the centerpiece of SeafoodSource.com’s story, “Offshore Aquaculture Taking Off in Southeast Asia.” USSEC Aquaculture Program Lead Technical Consultant – SEA Lukas Manomaitis recently spoke to the publication about training and promotion programs to promote the use of U.S. Soy in aquaculture in key producing countries including Indonesia, Philippines, Thailand and Vietnam.
Mr. Manomaitis discussed rising interest in offshore aquaculture, which species have the best potential for offshore aquaculture, and the growth in offshore cage aquaculture, among other topics.
To read the article in its entirety, please click here.
SeafoodSource.com’s website provides seafood buyers and sellers worldwide with in-depth news and information.
USSEC – Southeast Asia (SEA) held its 2017 USSEC Aquaculture Feed Nutrition Workshop in Davao City, Mindanao, Philippines on February 20.
Levy Loreto L. Manalac, USSEC Technical Consultant, Aquaculture – Philippines and Mark Newman, USSEC Feedmill and Nutrition Consultant, led the workshop. Mr. Newman presented how to utilize U.S. Soy products to reduce the amount of fishmeal and fish oil in aquaculture feeds, information on milkfish nutrition, and how to maximize the value of feed ingredients in a high priced environment. Mr. Manalac introduced USSEC Soy in Aquaculture in SEA and the Philippines, and presented USSEC’s results on a milkfish feeding demonstration in the Philippines.
23 feedmill staff, salespeople, and managers from different aquaculture feedmills in Mindanao attended the workshop, in addition to representatives from a fisheries institution and a feed additive company.
USSEC visited different marine fish farms in the Philippines to provide technical support and suggestions to improve their efficiency and production. USSEC was able to discuss and show on site proper feed management using the satiation setting technique using extruded floating feed.
USSEC was able to provide additional knowledge and information in marine fish hatchery biosecurity and production improvement, and proper fish culture management and feeding management to marine fish cage operators in Luzon and Mindanao, Philippines.
Despite a budget reduction that took effect in 2017, Indonesia’s Ministry of Marine Affairs and Fisheries (MMAF) has continued to support the development of offshore mariculture in Indonesia. In addition to rehabilitating 1,000 cages, the ministry, in cooperation with state-owned company Perindo Management, will build offshore marine cages operation in three different locations in Indonesia to promote the offshore mariculture system as well optimizing resources and improving seafood production, technology dissemination, and business diversifications (nursery), in addition to improving community income.
The locations selected for offshore mariculture farming are marine waters around Karimun Jawa in the Java Sea, marine waters around Cilacap and Pangandaran in the Indian Ocean, and Sabang Island in Aceh. The cages are expected to support the development of sea bass, pompano and cobia.
Each of the 6 cages, which are 50 meters in diameter, is expected to produce 500 metric tons (MT) per crop, thus targeting an additional 1500 MT in fish production from the three locations. Continued support from the government on mariculture development is in line with USSEC’s policy to support offshore mariculture. Mariculture production will increase the utilization of quality feed, including potential use of U.S. soybean meal in aquafeed.
Last August, USSEC and Cargill teamed up to conduct a seminar that introduced intensive pond aquaculture (IPA) technology to Cargill farm customers in Hưng Yên, a province of Vietnam. Based on the knowledge they gained from the seminar and with the support of Nguyen Huu Tho, Cargill technical manager, farmers started to construct IPA systems on their own land with equipment available locally.
Nguyễn Thị Thắm is among the first IPA adopters in northern Vietnam. She learned the IPA concept at the August seminar and constructed an IPA fixed floor raceway. She has a 3 ha farm, managed by her son, Vũ Duy Hào. At the same time, she ran a hub to collect fish from other farms to supply the market. After stocking tilapia for one month, she was very satisfied with the high survival rate compared to the same source of fingerlings stock to the traditional pond. She already plans to construct more raceways without waiting for the first IPA trial to finish.
There are currently six IPA sites in northern Vietnam: Mr. Phú in Bắc Giang, Mr. Trung in Bắc Ninh, Mr. Lừng in Hà Tây, Mr. Thao in Hà Tây, Mr. Hải in Hà Tây and Mr. Sơn in Thanh Hóa.
In November, USSEC Aquaculture Technical Director – Southeast Asia Lukas Manomaitis and USSEC Aquaculture Technical Manager – Vietnam Võ Hoàng Nguyên paid a visit to the IPA sites in Hưng Yên, Bắc Ninh and Thanh Hóa. They decided to conduct more visits to each IPA site and to organize training for farmers who are constructing and running IPAs by themselves in order to help them do it properly.
USSEC met with Chang Ku Yoon, president & CEO, CJ Philippines, Inc., and Ronaldo Cruz, aqua product manager, CJ Philippines, to present the USSEC Southeast Asia (SEA) and Philippines Soy in Aquaculture program and to discuss the Philippine Aquaculture Industry in CJ Phils Inc. Feedmill in San Rafael, Bulacan, Philippines.
USSEC discussed the ongoing programs in feedmill and nutrition where aquafeed nutritionists are guided in optimizing U.S. soybean meal in aquafeed formulation and other U.S. Soy products in a least cost formulation. The Low Volume High Density (LVHD) cage aquaculture and pond feed based technologies were also discussed to improve aquaculture production through sustainable and environmentally friendly practices using extruded floating feeds.
CJ Philippines Inc. is planning to revive their aquafeeds production and be present in the aquaculture feed industry. USSEC suggested that it is better for CJ Aqua Feeds to produce high quality feeds that will give farmers faster growth for fish and better feed conversion rates (FCR).
Myanmar is a growing market for America’s food and agricultural products. According to the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA), U.S. agricultural exports to Myanmar reached a record $15.3 million USD in FY14, up 24 percent from the previous year.
The opening of the USDA’s Foreign Agricultural Service (FAS) office in August 2016 at the U.S embassy in Yangon helps build activities and services in Myanmar. USSEC Technical Consultant, Aquaculture – Myanmar May Myat Noe Lwin says, “I believe that this will strengthen importing U.S. soybeans and soybean products to Myanmar as well.”
With the team effort of USSEC and various U.S. agriculture projects and programs, sales are expected to increase significantly. But there is still need of more input from the government body, and the opening of the FAS office with a permanent Agriculture Attaché will fill the gap, especially with the rules and regulations from the government bodies importing U.S. agriculture products.
USSEC’s aquaculture program will work with the FAS program to support the increase of sales of U.S. soybeans and soybean meal sales to Myanmar for its livestock and aquaculture industries.
USSEC conducted a cage aquaculture production cost management seminar for the Chinese staff and managers of Sahara Feeds Corp. Milkfish Cage Farm in Taal Lake, Talisay, Batangas, Philippines on December 7.
USSEC Philippines Technical Manager – Aquaculture Levy Manalac discussed how to manage and save on cage aquaculture production cost with the proper use of extruded floating feed and good feeding management with extruded floating feeds in cage culture, as USSEC Asia Marine Aquaculture Specialist Hsiang Pin Lan translated. USSEC also talked about proper feed storage and handling, the importance of sampling and proper recording, the use of quality fry/fingerlings and size grading, and proper fish health management that will help milkfish cage farmers to lower their production cost for better production and profitability.
Managing cage aquaculture production costs will also help improve water quality in the area by having lower feed conversion rates (FCR), thus helping continuous fish farming in the area. This will ensure continuous and possibly increasing demand in U.S. Soy products in local aquaculture feed manufacturing.
Thirteen area managers and technicians of Sahara Feeds Corp. Milkfish Cage Farm attended the seminar.
The Ministry of Marine Affairs and Fisheries, through the Directorate General of Aquaculture of Indonesia, signed an agreement last month with the Norwegian government and a private Norwegian mariculture enterprise to develop a mariculture industry of Asian sea bass or barramundi (Lates calcarifer) in offshore floating cages in Aceh (Sumatra), West Java, Sulawesi, and Papua provinces in Indonesia.
The mariculture scenario will be based on Norway’s successful salmon industry. The offshore cage culture areas, however, will be only about 1 to 3 kilometers from the beach line using round cages with a diameter of 10 to 30 meters and a depth of 4 to 6 meters with full extruded slow-sinking (slinking) pellet feeds with initial production target of around 15,000 tons per year.
There are currently only four big barramundi aquaculture companies in Indonesia: PT. Indomarind (Batam, near Singapore); PT. Lucky Samudra (Seribu Islands, Jakarta Bay); PT. Phillips Seafoods Indonesia; and PT. Bali Barramundi (both are in North Bali) with an estimated production of less than 1,500 tons per year. A long-established barramundi aquaculture company of PT. Fega Mariculture (Seribu Islands, Jakarta Bay) recently collapsed in early 2016 and another newly-built large barramundi aquaculture company PT. Paramount Barramundi (North Bali) was terminated before it started last year due to insufficient cash flow.
While the market for filleted barramundi has been confirmed, more technical considerations have been raised to strengthen the industry, as Indonesia’s aquaculture industry is weak in the following areas. First, the genetics and selective breeding of the brooders in hatcheries need to supply premium seeds. Second, fish health (vaccination) is a must during the culture period (16 to 24 months to reach 1.8 to 2.2 kg fillet size) (currently vaccination is a “luxury” procedure in Indonesia’s aquaculture industry) and the last is to provide the industry with premium feeds (with premium ingredients) with the correct feeding method.
The USSEC Southeast Asian Aquaculture Team met in mid-November to summarize the FY16 project year and plan the FY17 and FY18 project approaches.
“We have a strong and long-term team that has been working on behalf of U.S. soybean farmers and the U.S. Soy industry in general to promote the use of U.S. Soy products in the Southeast Asian region,” states Lukas Manomaitis, USSEC Aquaculture Program Lead Technical Consultant – SEA.
The focus for FY17 in particular is to move several initiatives to more advanced stages with continued work on the International Aquaculture Feed Formulation Database (IAFFD) and the marine fish program. Both of these initiatives are supported strongly by qualified state soybean boards (QSSB) with Nebraska, South Dakota, Michigan, and other QSSBs providing support to supplement United Soybean Board (USB), Market Access Program (MAP), and Foreign Market Development (FMD) funds.
“We are very thankful for the trust and support by the QSSBs particularly, as we meet with farmers from these areas on a regular basis,” says Mr. Manomaitis.
The USSEC SEA Aquaculture Program project year runs from November 1, 2016 to October 31, 2017 with four primary target nations and several secondary target nations. There are three main SEA projects (with several activities in each) and there is also overlap with at least three other worldwide projects/activities. The SEA aquaculture team expects to continue to drive the message of the value, utility and quality of U.S. Soy to SEA’s aquaculture industry.
USSEC – Philippines hosted the Myanmar aquaculture team led by USSEC Myanmar Technical Manager-Aquaculture May Myat Noe Lwin to observe and learn the Philippines’ aquaculture industry July 3-9.
Myanmar’s aquaculture team was able to learn and increase its knowledge on a feed-based culture system in tilapia culture and milkfish and pompano culture by visiting tilapia ponds and cage farms, milkfish cage farms, and a pompano cage farm.
The team also visited tilapia breeding stations and research facilities to learn about tilapia breeding practices and techniques. They visited the Freshwater Aquaculture Center – Central Luzon State University (FAC-CLSU), Bureau of Fisheries and Aquatic Resources – National Freshwater Fisheries Technology Center (BFAR-NFFTC), and GenoMar Supreme Philippines, Inc., all located in Science City of Munoz, Nueva Ecija, Philippines.
The Myanmar aquaculture team was better able to understand the aquafeed industry through its visit to Santeh Feeds Corp. and other aquafeed distributors and aqua stores.
This learning will help Myanmar’s aquaculture industry to improve its aquaculture production, in particular, tilapia production. These increased productions will translate to an increase in demand for formulated feeds, which will in turn increase demand for U.S. Soy products.