The Future of Aquaculture

AQUACULTURE icon Giles Cadman February 7, 2023

Nobody can deny that aquaculture will be part of our future, but what is the future of aquaculture?

Aquaculture is an essential element of food production, and its importance will only increase as the population does. We can only source so much seafood from the oceans, so aquaculture will soon be the primary way to reliably obtain seafood.

But the future of aquaculture will not be smooth. There are many hurdles we must overcome to grow aquaculture production sustainably alongside the growing demands for clean protein.

What Are the Major Threats in Aquaculture?

The aquaculture industry is facing many challenges. The energy costs are too high, there is a lack of expertise, and there is a plethora of disinformation.

The future of aquaculture will revolve around resolving or overcoming these challenges.

The high energy costs are arguably the biggest challenge because there are so many moving parts. There is no quick or easy fix, and it will take the combined brain power of thousands of experts to make aquaculture’s energy use truly sustainable.

On the other hand, the lack of expertise has a very clear solution—time. In another 10 years, there will no longer be a lack of expertise. The industry is booming, and it will not be long until there are as many specialists in aquaculture as there are in agriculture.

Disinformation is the one problem that I don’t see as having a solution. Instead of trying to change public opinion (which time and time again companies have proved to be a useless endeavour), we will have to work around it.

Most disinformation is a result of former poor practices, which generated a negative first impression. It’s incredibly challenging to overcome first impressions, and too many people will believe what they want to, regardless of the facts they are presented with.

So, all we can do is present the facts, the good and the bad, and let the public form their own opinions.

The Ideal Future of Aquaculture

This is the future of aquaculture, as I see it. All consumed species of fish will be produced in the market they are sold into. There will be no more long-haul shipping, no frozen produce, and no communities left without access to seafood.

It is a simple but amazing aim. One that I strongly believe can and will happen.

Why Is Aquaculture Important for the Future?

Aquaculture is essential for the future because it can help tackle two of the biggest issues the world is facing right now: global warming and food insecurity.

It is already possible for aquaculture facilities to produce so much food that they have an excess. This excess gives them the chance to produce clean protein cheaply and make an enormous difference to hunger.

In the next phase of my career in aquaculture, I intended to tackle the problem of food insecurity head on, specifically child hunger.