soybean field

USSEC Escorts Chinese Aquaculture Team to U.S.

USSEC China aquaculture staff escorted a six member Chinese aquaculture team, comprised of aquaculture technology extension specialists and producers, to the U.S. from January 17-27.  The main mission was to expose the team members to modern aquaculture research and technology application in the U.S.

1.The Chinese aquaculture team visited the U.S. National Hatchery Center in Hagerman, Idaho
The Chinese aquaculture team visited the U.S. National Hatchery Center in Hagerman, Idaho
Raceway rainbow trout farm in Idaho
Raceway rainbow trout farm in Idaho

During their trip, the team received in-classroom training at Auburn University for two days on modern aquaculture technology; visited the Intensive Pond Aquaculture (IPA) practice in both ponds and reservoirs at West Alabama and Auburn Universities; toured the U.S. Aquaculture National Nutrition Lab in Hagerman, Idaho; and observed the modern raceway aquaculture for cold-water species in Twin Falls, Idaho.  Team members were impressed with U.S. aquaculture practices in terms of water conservancy and environmental protection and noted that although there are good and plentiful natural resources that can be used for aquaculture development, both the U.S. government and aquaculture industry pay a lot of attention to healthy and sustainable aquaculture development by not causing any negative impact to the environment.  At West Alabama, the team visited not just the IPA practice, but also the super-intensive tank culture system for tilapia production.  The used water from the production system was reused for horticulture to minimize the loss of nutrition from fecal materials to the environment.  In Idaho, the team toured one farm that uses the water 27 times for different species.  Before wrapping up their U.S. trip, the team members and their USSEC escorts discussed how to apply in China what they observed in the U.S.  Of the six team members, two of them will adopt the IPA in 2015, three started in 2014 and an extension manager from Hangzhou will support the extension and adoption of the technology in the region in the coming years.
China is the largest aquaculture country in the world with more than 60 percent of global aquaculture production.  The country has paid a price for that, however, with pollution to the environment.  Although China’s pollution is not caused only by aquaculture, aquaculture has certainly contributed to it.  With the development of the Chinese economy and the progress of people’s consciousness regarding environmental protection, both the Chinese government and the industry have realized the importance of not trading the environment for aquaculture development.  For over ten years, China’s government has given more priority to environmental protection through both administrative orders and financial support.  USSEC’s aquaculture program answers the call from the Chinese government, and USSEC has been extremely fortunate to have the long-time support of the government for its activities in China.