We Said Good-Bye to 2013, but…

We Said Good-Bye to 2013, but…

Unfortunately, I am not one of those who love writing their memories in their blogs. Maybe it’s because I don’t read for fun. Therefore, I won’t blame you, if you don’t want to read what I wrote :)

Last December, we organized an international workshop with a broad participation in İzmir. The workshop was held as the local meeting of the guideline prepared for the sustainability of aquaculture activities in the countries that border on the Mediterranean Sea and the Black Sea. It has been held by GFCM-CAQ together with shareholders since 2009.

The guideline which was shared in the workshop was prepared through the economic, social and environmental evaluation of the results, which were obtained after the tasks done with shareholders for supporting the sustainable aquaculture’, and the inclusion of the project results supported by InDAM, SHoCMed, LaMed, MedAquaMarket AB Framework Programmes in the work. In the strategic areas that the Aquaculture Shareholders Platform determined, the participation of the countries, cooperation, information sharing between the research facilities and other shareholders, sustainable aquaculture activities, through implementations, having influences on the costs and positive and social and environmental effects were aimed.

The strategic areas determined by the Platform:

-  Chosen areas for aquaculture and planning these areas,

-  Aquaculture and environmental indicators,

-  Illness management and aquatic animal health,

-  Management and legal frame

-  Product quality, security and competition in the market,

-  Research, information sharing and transferring technology,

-  Bait production and management

-  Technology innovation and diversity

It was pointed out that these strategic areas had to be converted into a plan which would help reaching the related goals.

Results will be followed through the followings apart from the others:

- Preparing Implementing Research Programmes

- Cooperation strengthening and enhancement

- Preparing guidelines

Goals and efforts were made permanent and compliant through the GFCM Framework Programme (FWP_2013-2018) and especially FWP Work Programme No 3 the point ‘Increasing the role of Aquaculture in Food Security and Economic Growth’.

Parameters as environmental indicators are:

1. Principle; Limiting the global effect of aquaculture

  Indicator ; FCR

FCR is seen important to minimize the environmental effects of aquaculture and considered as the representative of the minimum bait waste given to environment.

It was evaluated if the activity can be sustained over the FCR values determined for bass and sea bream. It was stated that values more than 2,2 are unsustainable for bass. Values between 2,2-1,8 are sustainable at midlevel and the ones under 1,8 are sustainable. For sea bream, the limit was determined as 1,8.


As Çamlı, this view was shared: ‘ The values mustn’t be seen as bait loss only, bait quality and feeding frequency and stock management influence this value directly and therefore cannot be standardized and cannot symbolize the effects on the environments as a criterion.’

From that time on, this scale was canceled and changed as ‘watching rates of fish oil and flour’. Annual monitoring was required. The ones who are upset with FCR should hear this.

2. Principle; Sustaining ecological services in ecosystems.

Indicator; under the depth criterion and protecting the critical areas while choosing areas. Production level is related to depth and exposure of the area.

When the areas with 45 m-deeper critical sea habitats like posidonia are damaged, bentic community effect and the criteria like depth, duration and production size together with the criterion of choosing an area must be considered, because they take their old forms after years.

It must be stopped to establish a farm nearer than 400 m in these areas and the production amount must be evaluated according to the ecological processes. Monitorings that would be performed every three years were expected to be effective.

< 1,5 / 1,5-2/ >2** scale was chosen.

3. Principle; Decreasing the local effects on the environmental conditions and biodiversity.

Indicator; the existence of international monitoring programmes for monitoring antibiotics and other residuals. This formula was set forth:

Σ active agent(Kg) X GABI score / ton produced fish

50 ; unsustainable

0  ; sustainable.

Σ( active agent(Kg)x (lLC50)+1) x stay duration / ton produced fish

4. Principle; Decreasing the local effects on the environmental conditions and biodiversity.

Indicator, implementing a monitoring system to evaluate the level of the effects on bentic. One of the systems AMBI, Bentix, BQI, BOPA, MEDOCC, BQI can be chosen and preferred as a monitoring method. No implementation will be considered as unsustainable.  

Sustainable in case of implementation, otherwise unsustainable.

5. Principle; minimizing the effects on biodiversity and environmental conditions.

Indicator, reporting runaways (number of runaways)

Genetic pressure on populations must be diminished. It was stated that 44% of the incidents in Norway resulted from structural problems and managerial operational accidents (10%). I don’t know what the situation in our country is. But the accidents that occurred last year caused significant losses.


Score of non-existing runaway x number of runaways / produced fish (ton)

Knowing the number of runaways in aquaculture activities is not possible even when the stock management is done with technical and technological monitoring methods. It is clear that especially the runaways caused by the accidents cannot be standardized. The exact number of runaways can’t be known when the stock is counted after an accident or a negative incident. Because it is harmful for the fish and a physically-impossible method. Therefore, it is illogical to accept it as a criterion. After discussions, this section became ‘Decreasing as a trend was accepted as a criterion’.

By the way, it was stated in the meeting that FAO had a database with the name Preliminary Farmers Organization and all the complete tasks were here.

On the other side, important bass and bream producers like Nierus, Dias, Selonda were consolidated or went bankrupt in the crisis situation of Greece, the biggest bass and bream producer of Europe recently. The facilities that begin each year with 400 M fry stock are expected to produce only 150-200 million fries this year, and the fact that hatcheries will start producing fish in November supports this. There is only one country to benefit from it: Turkey. Well, how is the situation in our country?

In Turkey, there are 408 facilities registered in sea production and 193 419 ton/year capacity. In domestic waters, 1883 registered facilities and 242 322 ton/year capacity. In 2012, 212 000 tons of salmons were produced and this constituted 52 % of the total fish production. Officially, there are 18 associations as Aquaculture and Brood Stock Producer Associations. There are 40 members in Izmir Aquaculture Products Farmers’ Association. In this sense, it is expected from Turkey to increase its share in Europe and international market by becoming the main bream and bass producer. However, the skills of the big or small producers in marketing its products are gaining more importance in our country; because it is our country now, which has the option of setting prices. Regardless of the channel (associations, states etc.), we have to use this opportunity to make others accept our prices. For that, there are active associations such as Aegean Exporters Association. For production, we have to pay attention to the above-mentioned criteria!

Consequently, I am worried about ‘what kind of enforcements may arise for the producers in European member countries and candidate countries?’. But I find this kind of criteria useful for the companies and countries to determine a scale in order to evaluate themselves.

What can we say? Let’s see!

Şeyma Tarkan
Akuakültür Aquaculture Pınar Çipura Balıkçılık Levrek Fao Gfcm-caq

Registration to Newsletter

Register to our newsletter in order to be aware of our announcements and news.