Blue Tuna Aquaculture in Jarjoubb – The fish farming project for the breeding and fattening of bluefin tuna in the Jarjoub area, west of Marsa Matrouh city, is nearing completion, as it is being implemented intensively now under the management of the “National Company for Fish Resources and Aquaculture” of the National Service Projects Organization of the Armed Forces.
Mohamed Abdel Halim, project manager, said that the fish farming sector in Egypt is growing at a higher rate than all other fisheries activities, which gives the project paramount importance, especially since the production of the capture fisheries sector is declining sharply, due to the continuous depletion of fish stocks, and the technical and technical problems faced by this sector.
Mohamed Abdel Halim pointed out that the project of producing bluefin tuna in Marsa Matrouh city depends on the use of modern offshore aquaculture technologies with the help of the experience of the Company “TunaTech“, specialized in the production of high- technology and experience for fish production that transferred in Egypt for the first time, it is going to look forwards the breeding and fattening of these high market value specie.
Dr. Azza El-Ganainy, Professor of Fisheries at the Institute of Marine Sciences and consultant of the project, said that the project takes into account compliance with environmental standards approved by international agreements, in particular the Barcelona Convention, which signed to protect the marine environment and the coastal zone of the Mediterranean in 1976, under which the foundation laid for cooperation between the countries of the Mediterranean basin in protecting the sea from human impacts.
Driven by the lasting overfishing the stocks of many commercial valuable species are threatened. Especially the numbers of large predatory fishes like the Atlantic Bluefin Tuna (Thunnus thynnus) decreased dramatically. Over the past decades the natural populations of the Atlantic Bluefin tuna have decreased markedly when compared with fisheries data from the past. Since 2008 with amendments in 2012 a reinforced multi-annual recovery plan has been in place for a period of 15 years regulated by the International Commission for the Conservation of Atlantic Tunas (ICCAT) which strictly limits the amount of tuna which is allowed to be caught and sold legally. At the present time this quota is set at 13,500 tons.
Until now there is no real aquaculture for the Atlantic Bluefin Tuna in the Mediterranean. The present strategy of Atlantic Bluefin Tuna fisheries is to catch live and mature fish during their spawning migration, separate them into large net pens, tow them near the shore and fat them for several month until they get slaughtered. Mostly the fish caught have not spawned yet and do not start to spawn naturally during the fattening process. Due to these facts the actual way of tuna farming is not sustainable and supports the depression of the stocks.
Within the EU-funded DOTT, REPRODOTT, SELFDOTT and TRANSDOTT projects as well as in the Italian ALLOTUNA project the first European reproduction successes were achieved with assistance of TunaTech scientists. The ultimate aim of these projects was to replace wild caught fish with fish out of sustainable aquaculture which is still the main target TunaTech.
Blue Tuna Aquaculture in Jarjoubb