Friday 7. October 2016

Aquaculture - an important source of protein for future mankind

One of the world‘s leading experts on aquaculture and sustainability, gave  a lecture at the University Centre of the Westfjords last Monday. In his talk he focused on the challenge of producing enough food for the growing population of the world and how marine aquaculture will become a vital source of protein for the future mankind.

Costa-Pierce pointed out that the history of aquaculture dates back several thousand years and it is an important link in food production, especially in Asia where most of the world‘s aquaculture takes place today. Suitable areas and access to fresh water, for traditional agriculture and on-land aquaculture, are diminishing and in light of growing world population it will not be sufficient to provide enough food for mankind in the future. This fact makes marine aquaculture an even more vital source of protein in the future.

When building up and developing an aquaculture industry Costa-Pierce empasizes the importance of the local people‘s knowledge and experience – applying the local to the global. A social contract is necessary between the people of the community and the industry in order for it to thrive together.

Barry Costa-Pierce is the Henry & Grace Doherty Professor of Marine Sciences and Director of the Marine Science Center at the University of New England in Biddeford, Maine. His research interests are in “ocean food ecosystems”: How fisheries, aquaculture and seafoods throughout the world interact locally with marine ecosystems and people. Dr. Costa-Pierce is widely recognized as a pioneer of the field of “Ecological Aquaculture”. He was part of an international team that developed the United Nations Food and Agriculture Organization’s global guidelines for an “Ecosystems Approach to Aquaculture” that were released in 2010.  He has lived and worked as a fisheries research scientist and policy expert for R&D organizations throughout Asia-Pacific, Africa, and Latin America and he is currently involved in developing new education/research partnerships in Sweden and Iceland, where he works with the Icelandic Marine Cluster.

Costa-Pierce is visiting Iceland in relation with the Arctic Circle conference taking place in Reykjavík this weekend.He visited the Westfjords prior to the conference, meeting with representives of the University Centre among others.

The Power Point slides from the lecture can be accessed here.

Dr. Barry Costa-Pierce.
Dr. Barry Costa-Pierce.