Aquaculture has been defined by the Japanese Resource Council, Science and Technology Agency as under:
“Aquaculture is an industrial process of raising aquatic organisms upto final commercial production within properly partitioned aquatic areas, controlling the environmental factors and administering the life history of the organism positively and it has to be considered as an independent industry from the fisheries hitherto.”
Objectives of Aquaculture :
Having defined aquaculture and mentioned some of the reasons which have contributed to imparting a fillip to aquaculture in recent times, it is proper to state the objectives of aquaculture. These are:
- Production of protein rich, nutritive, palatable and easily digestible human food benefiting the whole society through plentiful food supplies at low or reasonable cost.
- Providing new species and strengthening stocks of existing fish in natural and man-made water-bodies through artificial recruitment and transplantation.
- Production of sportfish and support to recreational fishing.
- Production of bait-fish for commercial and sport fishery.
- Production of ornamental fish for aesthetic appeal.
- Recycling of organic waste of human and livestock origin.
- Land and aquatic resource utilization: this constitutes the macro-economic point of view benefiting the whole society. It involves (a) maximum resource allocation to aquaculture and its optimal utilization; (b) increasing standard of living by maximising profitability; and (c) creation of production surplus for export (earning foreign exchange especially important to most developing countries).
- Providing means of sustenance and earning livelihood and monetary profit through commercial and industrial aquaculture. This constitutes the micro-economic point of view benefiting the producer. In the case of small-scale producer, the objective is to maximise income by greatest possible difference between income and production cost and, in the case of large scale producer, by maximising return on investment.
- Production of industrial fish.