KOCHI: In an effort to popularise litopenaeus vannamei (a variety of shrimp) farming in the State, the Kerala University of Fisheries and Ocean Studies (KUFOS) has formulated an action plan to launch a large-scale vannamei farming project by organising shrimp farmers. KUFOS proposes to launch the venture by forming farmers’ groups and helping them export the yield directly, avoiding intermediaries.
The varsity will help the farmers secure licence from the Coastal Aquaculture Authority (CAA), Chennai, to start farming. KUFOS experts will monitor the preparatory arrangements after visiting the farming ponds set up by the farmers. The university will also organise training programmes and an aqua-exhibition on August 20 and 21, with the aim of creating awareness among the farmers on the farming procedures and to provide them guidance on dealing directly with the major manufacturers and feed agencies in the field of aquaculture.
“The project will offer a unique opportunity to shrimp farmers to start farming without investing huge amounts,” said KUFOS Vice-chancellor B Madhusoodana Kurup. “We will ensure that sustainable and eco-friendly farming methods are followed. The project is expected to help us gain access to the global market by availing certification from the Aquaculture Stewardship Council (ASC),” said the varsity authorities.
“Efforts are on to acquire cooperation of the ASC, which is ready to meet 60 per cent of the investment if we agree to follow the prescribed farming methods,” said the VC. “Besides, the Choice Group, Central Institute of Brackish Water Aquaculture (CIBA), Coastal Aquaculture Authority and the Marine Products Export Development Authorityare also cooperating with KUFOS in the endeavour,” added the VC. Fisheries Minister K Babu will inaugurate the training programme and exhibition at the KUFOS headquarters at Panangad on August 20. Interested farmers may register at the KUFOS. For details, contact 0484-2502587, 9645903087 or 9446032977.