Portugal estimates that it will produce 25,000 tonnes of fish in aquaculture from 2030 onwards, says Minister of the Sea – Observer
The production of fish in aquaculture in Portugal should reach 25,000 tons per year from 2030 and the contribution of the fish sector in total exports will be 7%, indicated this Thursday by the Minister of the Sea.
“Right now, we produce 14,000 tons of fish in aquaculture. Our goal is to reach 25,000 tons in 2030, in perfectly realistic terms”, said Ricardo Serrão Santos, stressing that the projection is made based “on the growth that is taking place”.
The Minister of the Sea presides over an annual conference session of the European Aquaculture Society, considered the largest scientific and technical meeting in the sector, which takes place in Funchal and counts on 1,200 participants.
According to the governor, between 2013 and 2018, fish and shellfish production in aquaculture in Portugal grew 41% and sales increased 124%, and in 2019 it exceeded 14,000 tonnes (2.5% more than in 2018) and the turnover was 118.5 million euros (24% more than in the previous year).
Ricardo Serrão Santos stressed that the sector has community financing, through the March 2020 program and the Blue Fund, and highlighted its research into the future of feeding the world’s population.
“The research we have is state-of-the-art, the technology is mature and continues to develop”, he said, stressing the need to encourage the link between science and industry, academia and entrepreneurs, to ensure the continuity of the production of “ healthy foods based on the oceans”.
The Minister of the Sea considers that aquaculture is an expanding and irreversible process, while recognizing that, in the last century, the sector had a negative impact on the marine environment, due to the use of antibiotics and nutrients that contaminated the waters.
“But now we’re going to have aquaculture as a path of development and of great future in the economy of the sea and of the populations”, he stated, also highlighting the potential of Madeira, where production has already reached 1,200 tons per year, with a turnover of 6 million euros.
The conference of the European Society of Aquaculture, works still in progress, had a presentation of 855 scientific papers, between Monday and Thursday, and the initiative was supported by the Government of the Republic, the Regional Government of Madeira, the Association for the Promotion of Madeira and ARDITI – Regional Agency for the Development of Research, Technology and Innovation.
Associated with the conference, an industrial fair was held in which around 100 companies and other institutions linked to the sector participated.