National Fisheries Development Board (NFDB) has sanctioned Asian Seabass seed production unit — the first in Andhra Pradesh — in Krishna District. With brackish water aquaculture activity gaining ground in the district, demand for huge quantity of Asian Seabass (Lates Calcarifer) species has also gone up.

Brackish water aquaculture is taken up in more than 5,000 acres across the district, but the farmers depend only on Seabass seed provided by Central Institute of Brackish water Aquaculture (CIBA), Tamil Nadu. The CIBA officials said that the variety survives in freshwater aquaculture ponds also, hence very popular.

The yield of Asian Seabass is much higher compared to other species. This led to the demand increasing manifold. Getting entire requirement from Tamil Nadu is turning out to be a Herculean task.

Many farmers had to withdraw their plan of growing the variety due to non-availability of seed in the district. “The NFDB has sanctioned a seed production unit worth Rs.72 lakh, which is proposed at Urlagonditippa village. It will be set up by T. Sankara Rao, a farmer,” Fisheries Deputy Director T. Kalyanam told The Hindu.