Aquaculture Management 2030

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By Milthon Lujan

Norway.- A new research project will investigate and analyse relevant management models for aquaculture in the future.


The aquaculture industry is very dynamic. The evolution of diseases and parasites, new technologies, changes in the markets and debate over who can use coastal zones are all factors that require continual adaptation.

This gives rise to the need to consider changes in aquaculture management and the use of sea areas in the coastal zone.

The project has received funding of NOK 9.5 million from the Norwegian Seafood Research Fund (FHF) and will run until 30 June 2020.

It involves researchers from the food research institute Nofima, the University of Stavanger, the University of Tromsø, and NTNU Social Research. Attorney Bjorn Sørgård of Arntzen de Besche is also participating.


The industry of the future

Analysis and input on future aquaculture management must be based on ideas of how the industry will look in the future. A number of factors that affect the aquaculture industry can be changed.

“There will be relatively large consensus on how we can expect things to develop for some of those factors, preferably based on ‘heavy trends’. Those factors we are unsure about and that could be very important are usually referred to as ‘wild cards’. Of course, many factors will be between these extremes,” says project manager Roy Robertsen of Nofima.

There is therefore considerable uncertainty about what the future holds for the aquaculture industry. In an effort to analyse the future, despite its great complexity, certain scenarios can be broken down.

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a. Environmental conditions, parasites and disease. Will major challenges today be resolved or exacerbated in the future, or will new and serious problems emerge?

b. Technological development. Will we be able to farm fish more intensively or in larger facilities, can rotation speed at sea be increased, what could more land-based or offshore facilities mean, and so on?

c. Social legitimacy and requirements for the aquaculture industry. Will there be even stronger demand and a desire to redistribute benefits and liabilities of the aquaculture industry, or a demand for more (or less) local influence?

The need for more knowledge


A number of ways of area planning and local management can be used. Some may influence how the processes are conducted, while others may influence the outcome of such processes, and some both. Resource interest and time limits on the right to use locations are two such means that will be very much in consideration.

The criteria the municipalities can apply to coastal zone planning, which indirectly influences the choice of technical solutions for running aquaculture facilities, have also arrived on the agenda recently.

“We will consider different types of criteria and the use of other means the authorities might apply, including looking at how they can affect the organisation of aquaculture and the redistribution of locations. The project will assess the arguments for and against the limited period use of sea areas, where flexibility must be offset against the need for long-term framework conditions. We will utilise various relevant models for resource interest, criteria for the use of the sea areas and time limits for their use,” concludes Robertsen.

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Roy Robertsen
Senior Scientist
Phone: +47 906 80 275

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