Kochi, July 28 (IANS) The Central Marine Fisheries Research Institute (CMFRI) here has got Rs 9 crore from the Central government to give boost to the production of two marine fish species — cobia and pompano.
The Kochi-headquartered institute’s proposal to enhance production of farmed cobia (Rachycentron canadum) and pompano (Trachinotus blochii) through the establishment of their brood banks and supply of larvae to all coastal states for seed production was approved by the Department of Animal Husbandry, Dairying and Fisheries (DADF) under the Union Ministry of Agriculture and Farmers Welfare.
The brood bank will be set up at Mandapam and Vizhinjam regional centres of the CMFRI and the regional hatcheries will be established in all maritime States.
CMFRI Director A. Gopalakrishnan said the new project will help solve the issue of scarcity of quality seeds of cobia and pompano which are among the most suitable species for sea cage farming in Indian waters.
“Since the present marine capture fisheries are unable to meet growing seafood demand, we have to focus on increasing the marine fish production through mariculture activities.”
“However, scarcity of quality seeds is a major impediment to the mariculture industry in the country. The proposed brood banks and regional hatchery facilities will cater to the requirements of quality seeds of cobia and pompano in all the maritime States,” said Gopalakrishnan.
With the establishment of the brood banks, production of 48 million newly hatched larvae of pompano and 30.72 million newly hatched larvae of cobia could be achieved per year.
He pointed out that CMFRI’s Mandapam Centre will now act as national nodal centre of mariculture.
On the proposed National Mariculture Policy, he said that the CMFRI is presently drafting it in collaboration with the fisheries departments of maritime States and Union Territories to develop the existing mariculture practices into a massive scale and to avoid conflicts of interest between other sectors.