Focus on high value aqua products for profits: Expert advice to farmers

AP best suited for shrimp, fish cultivation; govt. should encourage traditional farming, says Mohankumaram Nair

February 06, 2017 12:56 am | Updated 12:56 am IST - VIJAYAWADA:

Mohankumaran Nair.

Mohankumaran Nair.

Former Pro Vice-Chancellor of Kerala University of Fisheries and Ocean Studies (KUFOS) C. Mohankumaran Nair has said that farmers should take up traditional farming which has no restrictions and gives high profits.

In Andhra Pradesh traditional farming was very less but chances were bright to improve traditional and organic farming here, said Mr. Nair, an expert in aquaculture who developed freshwater prawn hatchery in 1990.

At present, about 95% of the produce was through scientific farming while traditional farming was being done in some pockets. Though the yield was less in traditional aquaculture, the profit would be more than 80%.

Traditional farming was more prevalent in West Bengal and Kerala than in AP, he said.

Best practices

“Aqua farmers should follow bio-flow culture and bio-mimicry methods which reduce feed and water usage and are environment-friendly. Intensive shrimp culture can be done at low risk, if farmers follow best practices,” Prof. Nair told The Hindu .

The former Pro VC is the visiting professor at Universidad Juárez Autónoma de Tabasco (UJAT), Villa Hermosa, Mexico (the largest public university in Mexico), the Central Institute of Fisheries Education (CIFE), and Kentucky University, USA.

He is consultant to the World Aquaculture Centre, Malaysia and was a Director Board Member of World Aquaculture Society, USA, and has published more than 150 research publications on aquaculture.

Favourable conditions

Mr. Nair, who visited several countries and attended many seminars and technical sessions, said that AP was best suited for shrimp and fish cultivation and farmers could get more profits if they cultivated high value items.

“Here the temperature is congenial for aquaculture and alkaline water is seen in AP which is suitable for aqua farming. In addition to this, enthusiastic farmers and the support from the government are good and water is available for 365 days in the State,” said Mr. Nair, who is the Director (Technical) and Consultant for Ananda Group of Companies.

“Seabass, murrel, tilapia, vennamei and tiger shrimp varieties have high export value.

“I request the farmers to cultivate the species which have good demand in the international market,” Prof. Nair said.

Recently, the government had identified many ponds, tanks and wetland areas for aquaculture, which could improve the produce and provide employment for some thousands of youths in villages, the aquaculture expert said.

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