Friday, July 19, 2024
Hawai'i Free Press

Current Articles | Archives

Thursday, March 1, 2012
Kona Kampachi Successful Harvest in Federal Waters off Hawaii
By News Release @ 7:46 PM :: 9728 Views :: Energy, Environment, National News, Ethics

Harvest of First Farmed Fish in U.S. Waters Shows Promise of Eco-Friendly Aquaculture

"Velella" Drifter Pen Project Completes Grow-out 3 to 75 Miles Offshore

KAILUA-KONA, Hawaii, Feb. 29, 2012 /PRNewswire/ -- Marine biologists at Kampachi Farms announced today the successful final harvest from the "Velella" Research Project, which raised fish for the first time in U.S. Federal waters. This harvest completes the grow-out cycle of sashimi-grade kampachi fish from an unanchored drifter pen that has been riding eddies in the open ocean, 3 to 75 miles offshore of the Big Island of Hawaii, since last summer.

(Photo: http://photos.prnewswire.com/prnh/20120229/LA62382)

"This final harvest far surpassed our expectations," said Neil Anthony Sims, Co-CEO of Kampachi Farms. "The fish thrived in the research net pen far from shore, with phenomenal growth rates and superb fish health... and without any negative impact on water quality, the ocean floor, wild fish or marine mammals."

The research project raised kampachi (a tropical yellowtail) in a single unanchored, submersible net pen tethered to a manned sailing vessel, in water up to 12,000 feet deep.

"This array proved to be very robust," said Steve Page, President of Ocean Farm Technologies, makers of the Aquapod® pen. "It withstood even extreme conditions 75 miles offshore, with winds gusting over 40 knots and swells over 20 feet."

The kampachi were fed a sustainable commercial diet that replaced a significant amount of fishmeal and fish oil with soy and other alternative agricultural proteins. No antibiotics, hormones or pesticides were used throughout the seven-month trial.

Sims reported that the kampachi reached an average of 5.6 lbs in six months, resulting in a first harvest a full three months ahead of schedule. The final food conversion ratio (FCR) was 1.6:1 (1.6 pounds of feed to produce 1 pound of fish). In comparison, average FCR for chicken is 1.9:1, and beef is up to 6.5:1.

Sims said that fish health was superb throughout the trial, with an overall mortality rate of less than 2%, compared with a standard aquaculture mortality rate of 15%. Sample testing showed that the kampachi had a fat content of 33%, making this an extraordinarily healthful fish for human consumption, high in heart-healthy Omega-3s with no discernible mercury or other contaminants.

"It makes perfect sense to raise fish in the ocean, where they belong," said Sims. "This was a healthy, low-stress environment for the fish, and we think that this allowed them to channel their energy into growing faster."

These were the first farmed fish raised in U.S. federal waters and required a special research permit from the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA). Sims indicated that this project represented a significant step forward in developing the open ocean aquaculture industry in the U.S.

The project garnered support from a wide variety of stakeholders from science, technology, and sustainable agriculture, including NOAA, the National Science Foundation, Lockheed-Martin, the International Copper Association, Ocean Farm Technologies, and the Illinois Soybean Association, which provided some funding from the Illinois soybean checkoff program.

"The success of the Velella research demonstrates that we can grow fish in the open ocean with no negative impact on pristine ocean ecosystems," said Sims. "We must now apply ourselves to responsibly scale up this industry, to meet the growing global demand for high-quality seafood."

The next phase of this research will test a single-point mooring 6 miles offshore in water 6,000 feet deep, where the pen can move freely in currents and still be within easy range of shore for supply delivery and crew rotation.

A video of this project is available at http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=OPs-0LfCEq0. For more information, visit www.kampachifarm.com.

Links

TEXT "follow HawaiiFreePress" to 40404

Register to Vote

2aHawaii

Aloha Pregnancy Care Center

AntiPlanner

Antonio Gramsci Reading List

A Place for Women in Waipio

Ballotpedia Hawaii

Broken Trust

Build More Hawaiian Homes Working Group

Christian Homeschoolers of Hawaii

Cliff Slater's Second Opinion

DVids Hawaii

FIRE

Fix Oahu!

Frontline: The Fixers

Genetic Literacy Project

Grassroot Institute

Habele.org

Hawaii Aquarium Fish Report

Hawaii Aviation Preservation Society

Hawaii Catholic TV

Hawaii Christian Coalition

Hawaii Cigar Association

Hawaii ConCon Info

Hawaii Debt Clock

Hawaii Defense Foundation

Hawaii Family Forum

Hawaii Farmers and Ranchers United

Hawaii Farmer's Daughter

Hawaii Federation of Republican Women

Hawaii History Blog

Hawaii Jihadi Trial

Hawaii Legal News

Hawaii Legal Short-Term Rental Alliance

Hawaii Matters

Hawaii Military History

Hawaii's Partnership for Appropriate & Compassionate Care

Hawaii Public Charter School Network

Hawaii Rifle Association

Hawaii Shippers Council

Hawaii Together

HiFiCo

Hiram Fong Papers

Homeschool Legal Defense Hawaii

Honolulu Navy League

Honolulu Traffic

House Minority Blog

Imua TMT

Inouye-Kwock, NYT 1992

Inside the Nature Conservancy

Inverse Condemnation

July 4 in Hawaii

Land and Power in Hawaii

Lessons in Firearm Education

Lingle Years

Managed Care Matters -- Hawaii

MentalIllnessPolicy.org

Missile Defense Advocacy

MIS Veterans Hawaii

NAMI Hawaii

Natatorium.org

National Parents Org Hawaii

NFIB Hawaii News

NRA-ILA Hawaii

Obookiah

OHA Lies

Opt Out Today

Patients Rights Council Hawaii

Practical Policy Institute of Hawaii

Pritchett Cartoons

Pro-GMO Hawaii

RailRipoff.com

Rental by Owner Awareness Assn

Research Institute for Hawaii USA

Rick Hamada Show

RJ Rummel

School Choice in Hawaii

SenatorFong.com

Talking Tax

Tax Foundation of Hawaii

The Real Hanabusa

Time Out Honolulu

Trustee Akina KWO Columns

Waagey.org

West Maui Taxpayers Association

What Natalie Thinks

Whole Life Hawaii