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News Article | May 17, 2017
Site: www.worldfishcenter.org

WorldFish will lead the new CGIAR Research Program on Fish Agrifood Systems (FISH) aiming to assist 3.5 million people to exit poverty and reducing the number of people suffering from deficiencies in essential micronutrients by 2.4 million. The global FISH partnership will enhance the contributions of fisheries and aquaculture to reducing poverty and improving food security and nutrition. It is designed to contribute to the achievement of the UN’s Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) and of CGIAR’s overall goals. Citing the crucial role of fisheries and aquaculture in global strategies to reduce poverty and improve food security and nutrition, and noting the underinvestment in research and development (R&D) on fish, the United Nations (UN) Committee on World Food Security's expert panel specifically calls on CGIAR to lead research that will enhance sustainability, productivity and access to fish by those most in need (HLPE 2014). WorldFish Director General, Blake Ratner: “Enhancing the role of fish in global diets is a huge opportunity to affect sustainable change in livelihoods, food and nutrition security. Fish is a highly nutritious food source with great potential for scaled-up and environmentally sensitive production.” FISH aims to achieve six outcomes by 2022. FISH Interim Program Director and Management Committee Chair, Michael Phillips: “Fish is the animal-source food with the fastest-growing production. Sustainable aquaculture practices offer water, energy and feed conversion efficiencies superior to any other domesticated animal food. And, fish is the only animal-source food that can be produced in saltwater, offering unique advantages for climate resilient production.” FISH will focus on the three interlinked challenges of sustainable aquaculture, small-scale fisheries (SSF), and enhancing the contribution of fish to nutrition and health of the poor in priority geographies of Africa and Asia-Pacific. Fisheries and aquaculture contribute to livelihoods for 800 million people and provide 3.1 billion people with 20% of their animal protein (FAO 2015), as well as micronutrients and essential fatty acids critical to cognitive and physical development (HLPE 2014). Three-quarters of the countries where fish contributes more than one-third of animal protein in the diet are low-income food-deficit countries (Kawarazuka and Béné 2011), where fish is often the cheapest and most accessible animal-source food (Belton and Thilsted 2014). To meet future demand for fish, particularly in developing countries, production will need to double by 2030. The scale of this challenge requires research innovations across the whole spectrum of aquaculture and fisheries production systems and associated value chains. FISH brings together a unique set of multistakeholder partnerships to harness emerging science in aquaculture and fisheries to deliver development outcomes at scale. FISH is led by WorldFish, together with the Australian Research Council Centre of Excellence in Coral Reef Studies at James Cook University, Australia; the International Water Management Institute; Natural Resources Institute at the University of Greenwich (NRI), England and Wageningen University, Netherlands. For more information or to request an interview contact: About WorldFish is an international, nonprofit research organization that harnesses the potential of fisheries and aquaculture to reduce hunger and poverty. Globally, more than one billion poor people obtain most of their animal protein from fish and 800 million depend on fisheries and aquaculture for their livelihoods. WorldFish is a member of CGIAR, a global research partnership for a food-secure future. About FISH Pursuing a research agenda through a network of multistakeholder partners, The CGIAR Research Program on Fish Agrifood Systems (FISH) enhances the contributions of fisheries and aquaculture to reducing poverty and improving food security and nutrition. FISH brings together a unique set of multi-stakeholder partnerships to harness emerging science in aquaculture and fisheries to deliver development outcomes at scale. FISH is led by WorldFish, together with the Australian Research Council Centre of Excellence in Coral Reef Studies at James Cook University, Australia; the International Water Management Institute; Natural Resources Institute at the University of Greenwich (NRI), England and Wageningen University, Netherlands. In regional contexts, the program partners closely with governments, NGOs, the private sector and research organizations to influence national, regional and global policy and development practice. About CGIAR is a global research partnership for a food-secure future. Its science is carried out by the 15 research Centers that are members of the CGIAR Consortium in collaboration with hundreds of partners.


News Article | May 19, 2017
Site: www.worldfishcenter.org

In the young half-island nation of Timor-Leste, fisheries are small-scale and have low catch rates, meaning fish is an underexploited source of nutrition and protein that can help combat the country’s high rate of malnutrition. Recognizing this, WorldFish is partnering with Timor-Leste’s Ministry of Agriculture and Fisheries to lead a project funded by the Kingdom of Norway to develop the fisheries sector. Key project activities include a nearshore stock assessment, deployment of fish aggregating devices (FADs) in five rural communities and drafting of a new national fisheries strategy.


WorldFish said Tuesday it will lead the new Consultative Group for International Agricultural Research (CGIAR) Research Program on Fish Agrifood Systems (FISH), which will focus on sustainable aquaculture, small-scale fisheries, and enhancing contribution of fish to nutrition and health of the poor in priority geographies of Africa and Asia-Pacific. "Fish is the only animal-source food that can be produced in saltwater, offering unique advantages for climate resilient production," said FISH Interim Program Director and Management Committee Chair Michael Phillips. "Fish is the animal-source food with the fastest-growing production." The global FISH partnership will support fisheries and aquaculture contributions to achieve the UN’s Sustainable Development Goals and of CGIAR’s overall goals. Partnering on FISH with WorldFish are the Australian Research Council Centre of Excellence in Coral Reef Studies at James Cook University, Australia; the International Water Management Institute; Natural Resources Institute at the University of Greenwich (NRI), England and Wageningen University, Netherlands. For more seafood news and updates, follow us on Facebook and Twitter or sign up for our daily newsletter.


News Article | May 29, 2017
Site: www.intrafish.com

Tilapia Lake Virus (TiLV), a contagious disease plaguing fish farms, has now been confirmed in five countries on three continents: Colombia, Ecuador, Egypt, Israel and Thailand. However, the FAO said it is likely TiLV may have a wider distribution than is known. FAO's Global Information and Early Warnings System released a special alert Friday warning the disease "threatens the livelihoods and food security of millions of people dependent on tilapia farming. "While there is no public health concern for this pathogen, there is a significant risk of TiLV being translocated both inter- and intra-continentally through the movement of infected live tilapias in the absence of appropriate biosecurity measures. "Tilapia producing countries need to be vigilant and take appropriate risk management measures ... to reduce the further spread and potential socio-economic impacts of this emerging disease." There are many knowledge gaps linked to TiLV. More research is required to determine whether TiLV is carried by non-tilapine species and other organisms such as piscivorous birds and mammals, and whether it can be transmitted through frozen tilapia products. It is not currently known whether the disease can be transmitted via frozen tilapia products. The disease shows highly variable mortality, with outbreaks in Thailand triggering the deaths of up to 90 percent of stocks. China, India and Indonesia are actively monitoring for it while the Philippines plans to start soon. Israel currently has an epidemiological retrospective survey, which is expected to determine factors influencing low survival rates and overall mortalities including relative importance of TiLV. Also, a private company is currently working on the development of live attenuated vaccine for TiLV. Just this month, the Network of Aquaculture Centres in Asia-Pacific (NACA) released a TiLV Disease Advisory; the World Organisation for Animal Health (OIE) released a Disease Card; and the WorldFish Center released a Factsheet: TiLV: what to know and do. In 2015, world tilapia production, from both aquaculture and capture, amounted to 6.4 million metric tons, with an estimated value of $9.8 billion (€8.8 billion), and worldwide trade was valued at $1.8 billion (€1.6 billion). China, Indonesia and Egypt are the three leading aquaculture producers of tilapia, a fish deemed to have great potential for expansion in sub-Saharan Africa. For more seafood news and updates, follow us on Facebook and Twitter or sign up for our daily newsletter.


News Article | May 29, 2017
Site: www.thefishsite.com

A new programme that aims to use fisheries and aquaculture to assist 3.5 million people to exit poverty and reduce the number of people suffering from deficiencies in essential micronutrients by 2.4 million has been launched this month. Called the CGIAR Research Program on Fish Agrifood Systems (FISH), it will be led by WorldFish and aims to enhance the contributions of fisheries and aquaculture to reducing poverty and improving food security and nutrition. It is designed to contribute to the achievement of the UN’s Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) and of CGIAR’s overall goals. Citing the crucial role of fisheries and aquaculture in global strategies to reduce poverty and improve food security and nutrition, and noting the underinvestment in research and development (R&D) on fish, the United Nations (UN) Committee on World Food Security's expert panel specifically calls on CGIAR to lead research that will enhance sustainability, productivity and access to fish by those most in need (HLPE 2014). WorldFish Director General, Blake Ratner, reflected: “Enhancing the role of fish in global diets is a huge opportunity to affect sustainable change in livelihoods, food and nutrition security. Fish is a highly nutritious food source with great potential for scaled-up and environmentally sensitive production.” FISH aims to achieve six outcomes by 2022: • Adoption of improved breeds, aquafeeds, fish health and aquaculture and fisheries management practices by 5.0 m households. • Assisting 3.5 m people, with at least 50% women, to exit poverty through gender-inclusive livelihood improvements. • Reducing the number of people suffering from deficiencies in essential micronutrients by 2.4m, with at least 50% of them women. • Assisting 4.7m more women of reproductive age to consume an adequate number of food groups. • Decreasing greenhouse gas emissions by 20%, and increasing water and nutrient use efficiency by 10%, in 4.8m metric tons of annual farmed fish production. • Restoring 3.3m ha of ecosystems through more productive and equitable management of small-scale fishery resources and rehabilitation of degraded aquaculture ponds. FISH Interim Program Director and Management Committee Chair, Michael Phillips, added: “Fish is the animal-source food with the fastest-growing production. Sustainable aquaculture practices offer water, energy and feed conversion efficiencies superior to any other domesticated animal food. And, fish is the only animal-source food that can be produced in saltwater, offering unique advantages for climate resilient production.” FISH will focus on the three interlinked challenges of sustainable aquaculture, small-scale fisheries (SSF), and enhancing the contribution of fish to nutrition and health of the poor in priority geographies of Africa and Asia-Pacific. Fisheries and aquaculture contribute to livelihoods for 800 million people and provide 3.1 billion people with 20% of their animal protein (FAO 2015), as well as micronutrients and essential fatty acids critical to cognitive and physical development (HLPE 2014). Three-quarters of the countries where fish contributes more than one-third of animal protein in the diet are low-income food-deficit countries (Kawarazuka and Béné 2011), where fish is often the cheapest and most accessible animal-source food (Belton and Thilsted 2014). To meet future demand for fish, particularly in developing countries, production will need to double by 2030. The scale of this challenge requires research innovations across the whole spectrum of aquaculture and fisheries production systems and associated value chains. FISH brings together a unique set of multi-stakeholder partnerships to harness emerging science in aquaculture and fisheries to deliver development outcomes at scale. FISH is led by WorldFish, together with the Australian Research Council Centre of Excellence in Coral Reef Studies at James Cook University, Australia; the International Water Management Institute; Natural Resources Institute at the University of Greenwich (NRI), England and Wageningen University, Netherlands.


News Article | May 4, 2017
Site: www.worldfishcenter.org

By 2025, African governments hope that 40% of the total fish consumed in Africa will be met by aquaculture. Ongoing research and training provided by the WorldFish-run Africa Aquaculture Research and Training Center in Egypt will be critical to achieving this goal. Since opening in 1998, the center has developed a faster-growing strain of Nile tilapia and trained over 1690 individuals from 105 countries in aquaculture techniques.


News Article | May 4, 2017
Site: www.fao.org

In recent years, with dramatic rises and increased volatility in food prices, there is a risk that the diets of the poor will become even less diverse and more dependent on starchy staples. There is therefore a renewed emphasis on the production, access, distribution and utilization of common, micronutrient-rich foods. Fish, especially nutrient-rich small fish, from the wild and from aquaculture, can play a vital role in improving human nutrition. Ahead of the ICN2 Second International Conference on Nutrition, FAO and WorldFish have prepared a paper to consider how the contribution of fish to diets, particularly those of the poor, can be maximized. For more information: FAO Fisheries and Aquaculture Department ICN2 WorldFish


News Article | May 8, 2017
Site: www.worldfishcenter.org

In Bangladesh, it is illegal to catch, carry or sell juvenile hilsa (jatka) from November 1 to June 30 or catch mother hilsa during the breeding season, usually September and October. This ban was introduced by the government in 2011 to protect fragile stocks of hilsa, the country’s national fish. But many fishers—who earn less than BDT 10,000 (USD 127) a month, have little savings and no alternate source of income—often keep fishing illegally. “We prohibit fishermen from all kinds of fishing during these months. They can’t catch any type of fish during that time,” explains Dr. Md Abdul Hasnat, District Fisheries Officer, Patuakhali. “For this reason, they face a very tough financial situation.” Helping fishing families comply with the ban and cope during the no-fishing period is one focus of the USAID-funded Enhanced Coastal Fisheries in Bangladesh (ECOFISH) project (2014–2019). Implemented by WorldFish and the Bangladesh Department of Fisheries with other partners, the project provides training and support to poor and rural fishing households and research-backed advice to government decision-makers.


News Article | May 5, 2017
Site: www.thefishsite.com

WorldFish hopes that its Africa Aquaculture Research and Training Center in Egypt will help ensure that 40 percent of the total fish consumed on the continent will be met by aquaculture by 2025. This ambitious target has been set by African governments and the WorldFish center is helping by providing training on best-practice techniques to workers in the fish farming sector across the continent. To date, over 1690 government officers, university staff members, farmers, extension agents and researchers from 105 countries have received training, according to Kate Bevitt of WorldFish. “We learned many different techniques in aquaculture and hopefully when I get back to my country it will help in capacity building,” said training participant Folani A Olayinka, a fisheries officer from Nigeria. The best-practice training programs are based on findings from the center’s research into new and improved fish farming technologies, which has been ongoing since the center opened in 1998. Since 2000, the center has run a breeding program for a faster-growing strain of Nile tilapia, known as the Abbassa improved strain. Dissemination of the Abbassa strain has benefited many farmers in Egypt, the third-largest tilapia-producing country in the world. “I used to produce four tons of tilapia,” explained Egyptian fish farmer Hamada Refaat Attia. “But now, after using the Abbassa strain, the total production of my ponds is about five tons.” Spread over 62 hectares in the Nile delta, the center has 185 earthen ponds, 75 indoor concrete tanks and a research laboratory. These facilities are used by research institutions and private businesses from Africa and beyond to engage in collaborative research with the center. In 2016, the global feed manufacturer Skretting partnered with WorldFish to establish a new Fish Nutrition Research Unit at the center. “The current experiments aim to evaluate the performance of local raw materials on fish growth, survival and their digestibility,” said Mahmour Asfoor, Marketing and Communications Assistant Manager for Skretting in Egypt. With 30 percent of Africa’s population currently undernourished, it is hoped that the center’s research and training will enable the growth of aquaculture and lead to enhanced food and nutrition security across the continent.


News Article | June 22, 2017
Site: www.worldfishcenter.org

WorldFish will embark on new research to create more resilient fish with characteristics such as disease resistance and more effective feed utilization. Based on a roadmap developed with world experts at a WorldFish-hosted fish breeding workshop on 23–24 May at The Roslin Institute in Edinburgh, the research will use advanced techniques such as genomic selection to introduce these characteristics into its improved tilapia strains. Since 1988, WorldFish has used selective breeding to develop and manage the fast-growing Genetically Improved Farmed Tilapia (GIFT) strain. The strain has been disseminated to at least 16 countries, mostly in the developing world, and is grown by millions of small-scale fish farmers for food, income and nutrition across the globe. Use of genomic selection tools, which enable the selection of animals based on genetic markers, will allow WorldFish to expand its GIFT research beyond a growth-only focus and introduce selection for characteristics that are otherwise difficult to measure, such as resilience and feed efficiency. Genomic selection has enabled a step change in the rate of genetic improvement of terrestrial livestock, and has the potential to do the same in fish. Expansion of GIFT research is a key part of the CGIAR Research Program on fish (FISH) and supports WorldFish efforts under its sustainable aquaculture program to increase the productivity of small-scale aquaculture to meet growing global demand for fish. John Benzie, Program Leader, Sustainable Aquaculture, WorldFish: “Incorporating new traits in the breeding program for GIFT will help fish farmers prepare for future challenges such as climate change and increasing evidence of disease risks. This will particularly benefit farmers in Africa and Asia, where tilapia is critical for food security yet farmers often have limited access to improved fish breeds suited to local conditions.” Ross Houston, Group Leader, The Roslin Institute: “Aquaculture production needs to increase by 40 percent by 2030 to meet global demands for fish. Nile tilapia (Oreochromis niloticus) is arguably the world’s most important food fish, and plays a key role in tackling rural poverty in developing countries. The innovations in genetic improvement mapped out in this workshop are an important step toward achieving these ambitious goals.” Attendees of the workshop included experts from WorldFish’s Malaysian and Egyptian bases, The Roslin Institute, the Swedish University of Agricultural Sciences, The University of Stirling’s Institute of Aquaculture, the Earlham Institute, CIRAD and the Animal Breeding and Genetics group of Wageningen University and Research. The roadmap will feed into a strategy for the genetic improvement and dissemination of GIFT seed in Africa, the further development of which will take place at the Genetics Network meeting being hosted by WorldFish at the World Aquaculture 2017 conference in Cape Town on 26–30 June. For more information or to request an interview contact: About WorldFish is an international, nonprofit research organization that harnesses the potential of fisheries and aquaculture to reduce hunger and poverty. Globally, more than one billion poor people obtain most of their animal protein from fish and 800 million depend on fisheries and aquaculture for their livelihoods. WorldFish is a member of CGIAR, a global research partnership for a food-secure future. About CGIAR is a global research partnership for a food-secure future. Its science is carried out by the 15 research Centers that are members of the CGIAR Consortium in collaboration with hundreds of partners.

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