News: Southeast Asia
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.
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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.
USSEC hosted Filipino companies Finfish Hatcheries Inc. and Alsons Aquaculture Corp. on the Milkfish Hatcheries and High Value Marine Fish Hatcheries Study Tour in Gondol, Bali, Indonesia October 23 – 27.
The USSEC Milkfish Hatcheries and High Value Marine Fish Hatcheries Study Tour featured a presentation of Indonesia’s milkfish and high value marine fish industry and hatchery updates by the Institute for Mariculture Research and Development (IMRAD), and visits to different milkfish hatcheries and high value marine fish hatcheries in Indonesia.
The two companies from the Philippines were able to increase their knowledge and understanding of the Indonesian milkfish and high value marine fish hatcheries, including broodstock management; breeding techniques; larval rearing and production; natural food production, usage and application; and fry/fingerling production and management. They were also able to increase knowledge on the proper construction of hatchery structures.
The Philippines produced 384,425 metric tons (MT) of milkfish in 2015, with an estimated 900 million milkfish fry used. Finfish Hatcheries Inc. is hoping to increase its milkfish fry production after this trip. The estimated milkfish feed requirement is about 840,000 to 920,000 MT.
In Vietnam, there are large amount of renewable energy (RE) resources, which are distributed throughout the country. Energy from biogas is estimated of about 10 billion cubic meters (m³), with resources that can be collected from landfills, animal excrement, and agricultural residue. The ten largest Vietnamese pig producers, in 2015, can produce 308.789.465 kilowatts of electricity per day from 158,904 m³ of animal waste.
Biogas from fish farming is not yet technically feasible, because fishpond sludge can only be collected after harvest. With an Intensive Pond Aquaculture (IPA) system with a sludge collector set up at the quiescent zone, however, fish waste can be easily collected daily, even hourly, when the biomass became large in the raceway. These technical properties of IPA allow the consideration of producing biogas from fishpond culture.
Benefits from fish waste biogas include:
- Methane from fish waste biogas can be used to run the air blower in the IPA system, saving electricity cost
- Methane from fish waste biogas can be used to warm up water at the inlet of the raceway. This would greatly help farmers in Northern Vietnam, where there was six months of winter season of no culture due to low water temperature.
Today, Vietnam faces several natural resource issues (water, energy) as well as environmental issues in aquaculture (fish pond effluent treatment), which hold up development in the aquaculture industry. USSEC Vietnam is focusing on IPA with biogas technology to promote profitable and sustainable pond aquaculture production. The objectives are to push the use of commercial feed in high tech culture, which consequently increase the demand of soy in aquafeed, especially U.S. Soy products, to create an entire green value chain.
In October, USSEC supported the implementation of an offshore mariculture industrial tour to Malta and Italy. The program is expected to allow participants from both government and industry to be exposed to the current status of mariculture in the Mediterranean.
Mediterranean countries such as Greece, Turkey, Italy and Malta are key producers of sea bream and sea bass for the EU market. Those producing countries have established offshore mariculture development for the last decade to improve sustainability.
The tour is expected to improve the policies and practices to support offshore mariculture development in Indonesia. Offshore mariculture would allow the establishment of industrial scale, consistent volume, and quality to meet global seafood market demand. More farmed seafoods would mean more quality aquafeed to produce.
In September, USSEC supported two national level seminars in Surabaya and Jakarta, Indonesia, which were aimed to support the development of a sustainable mariculture development roadmap and shrimp certification policies. The support is expected to guide Indonesian aquaculture industry development to be more competitive, productive, efficient, and sustainable.
The seminars involved the active participation of key stakeholder elements, including government senior officials, the Shrimp Club and shrimp producers, feed mills, and processors/packers, as well as relevant industry stakeholders. A task force will be established to work on improving Indonesia’s shrimp aquaculture industry.
Recent developments have shown that customers and buyers are becoming more aware of the importance of sustainability. Shrimp certification will lead to the use of certified feed and ingredients, which will be highly beneficial to USSEC’s commitment to the U.S. Soy Sustainability Assurance Protocol (SSAP).
USSEC’s aquaculture program sponsored 17 participants to attend the Progressus Aquaculture Nutrition AgriSchool, a five-day intensive short course on aquaculture nutrition. Readers may recall that USSEC “declared victory” on the topic of basic training in aquaculture nutrition with Progressus’ decision to create a commercial training program on this topic.
This program allows USSEC to focus the limited time of its feed nutritionists on more intensive training of key U.S. Soy-using stakeholders. Additionally this event allowed Aquaculture Program Lead Technical Consultant – SEA Lukas Manomaitis to introduce the USSEC-supported International Aquaculture Feed Formulation Database (IAFFD) to the participants, as well as allow them to use the database in a commercial feed formulation program (Bestmix).
It is hoped that a similar course to this, the Aquaculture Feedmilling AgriSchool, may further help USSEC to better use its time for focused events rather than general training of industry. The Aquaculture Feedmilling AgriSchool will be vetted in November of this year.
USSEC participated in the 7th Aquatech Philippines: Aquaculture Expo & Convention in Tagaytay City on July 21. This year’s theme was “Exploring the Latest Innovations for Higher Production, Best Alternatives and Strategies for Global Marketability.”
Aquatech Philippines, for the past six years, has been gathering experts and stakeholders from the aquaculture sector. This sole technical event in the Philippines focusing in aquaculture recognizes the importance of the collection and sharing of knowledge in aquaculture activities by facilitating a comprehensive trade exhibition, technical conference, free livelihood seminars, and fellowship activities. The event aims to develop sustainable aquaculture in the country and contribute to the alleviation of poverty and was attended by nearly 150 participants from different aquaculture stakeholders in the Philippines.
USSEC Technical Manager – Philippines and Southeast Asia Demonstration Coordinator Levy Loreto Manalac presented and discussed “The USSEC Soy In Aquaculture Program’s Work on Improvement of the Philippines Milkfish Chanos chanos Industry Through Better Feed and Feeding Approaches.” USSEC Marine Fish Aquaculture Specialist Hsiang Pin Lan presented and discussed “Milkfish Disease and Health Management: Observations and Findings in Philippines.”
USSEC’s aquaculture program recently welcomed an experienced marine fish broodstock expert, Dr. Robert Vassallo Agius, to Thailand to speak primarily to the Asian sea bass hatchery industry. The target of the presentation was to highlight the importance of formulated broodstock feeds as both a biosecurity measure and for better production. Originally intended for an audience of about 40 participants, the final number swelled to over 60 as industry learned of the seminar’s content, with both commercial and government interest as well as commercial feed firms.
This topic, and another on larval nutrition and rearing, benefited from the fact that Dr. Agius is one of the leading individuals working on broodstock nutrition in Japan and Europe. It is also an important one as Thailand is a major producer of large numbers of Asian sea bass fingerlings for domestic and regional use, but not particularly high quality ones.
High quantities of high quality marine fish fingerlings are an important step to moving to industrial-scale production of marine fish in Southeast Asia and will lead to a requirement for high quality and consistent feeds for growout operations. It is in that area that USSEC expects expanded promotion of U.S. Soy products in the marine fish aquaculture industry.
USSEC organized and hosted a Southeast Asia (SEA) trade delegation made up of importers and end-users of agricultural products from August 28 to September 8, 2016 in the United States. This mission resulted in trades and negotations of more than $125 million in U.S. ag products.
The main highlight of the mission was the 2016 U.S. Soy Global Trade Exchange in Indianapolis, Indiana on August 30 and September 1. Throughout the course of the 12-day visit, besides participating in the conference and meeting with U.S. producers and suppliers, participants also had the opportunity to experience firsthand farming operations, grain storage facilities, oilseed crushing plants, transloading and port facilicities, and, in the process, interact and network with U.S. Soy producers, U.S. suppliers and service providers along the U.S. soy supply chain such as loadport surveyors, among others.
The trade mission, led by USSEC’s SEA representatives, was comprised of 57 executives representing 45 companies from Indonesia, Malaysia, Myanmar, Philippines, Singapore, Thailand, and Vietnam. The SEA delegation, divided into two separate teams according to their purpose and use of soy products, included senior agricultural industry executives, owners, and directors from trading, crushing, feed milling, livestock-raising, and food processing companies and associations.
In addition to attending the U.S. Soy Global Trade Exchange in Indianapolis, the SEA (feed) team also participated in the Indiana Field Day event on September 2 where they toured the Indianapolis Motor Speedway and visited with major grain company Bunge, Integrity Biofuels, and the Reichenbach Farm.
Meanwhile, the SEA (food) team members traveled toward Cincinnati, Ohio to continue with their program, which included visits with U.S. exporters Ceres Commodities, Bluegrass Farms, and Rogers Grain Inc. While passing through Kentucky and Tennessee, the feed team visited with Ray Mackey on his farm, enjoyed a lunch hosted by the Kentucky Soybean Board, and met with Glen Hutchinson on his farm.
In Nashville, Tennessee, the feed team was further divided into two teams with one group landing in Norfolk, Virginia, while the other group continued on to New Orleans. The program in Norfolk included meetings with Lansing Trade Group, Perdue Agribusiness, the North Carolina Department of Agriculture, Federal Grain Inspection Service and local farming operations – Batemans, Pendleton, and Moore Farms. In New Orleans, the team visited Thionville Labs, CHS Inc., Bunge, and the Russell Marine Group.
This year’s SEA trade mission was well-received by both team members and U.S. growers, U.S. companies, the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA), and other ag-organizations that hosted the groups on location and shared their time and expertise to the benefit of the U.S. agricultural industry. Through the support and effort provided by USSEC and the entire U.S. Soy family, the U.S. Soy Advantage message was well-communicated throughout this mission.
Based on written feedback from the SEA trade team, over 350,000 metric tons of U.S. agricultural products with an estimated value of $125 million USD were negotiated and/or traded throughout the course of this mission.
As a result of producing aquafeed with less fishmeal, taurine has risen in importance as an important ingredient that supplies protein. Taurine allows animals, especially marine fish that require high amounts of protein, to achieve a balanced diet.
Vietnamese feed mills in Vietnam have been specializing in pangasius feed, and feed formulators have not yet turned their focus to taurine.
Recently, another freshwater species, snakehead, became a motivation to use taurine and lecithin in the diet. Snakehead requires high levels of protein and fat in feed (45 percent crude protein, 10 percent crude fat). The role of corn gluten meal (CGM) is also important to steady the unbalanced amino acid profile when using soy products as a main source to replace protein demand in marine fish.
The above-mentioned ingredients need to be recommended to feed formulators in order to get a suitable formulation with the lowest cost. USSEC Vietnam focuses on those specific ingredients, and taurine and lecithin will be a subject in the upcoming Asian Aquaculture Feed Formulation Database (AAFFD) workshop.
USSEC’s goal is to give aquaculture feed formulators more confidence in using a soy-optimized diet. The U.S. Soybean Sustainability Assurance Protocol (SSAP) will be a key method to promote U.S. Soy products during seminars and workshops.