The biggest fisheries research organization in the world with locations throughout the Indian coasts and research operated through 10 major divisions
The Central Marine Fisheries Research Institute was established by Government of India on Feb 3rd 1947 under the Ministry of Agriculture and later joined the ICAR family in 1967/1971.During the course of 65 years journey the Institute has emerged as leading global marine fisheries institute
from a mere taxonomic and statistics mandate. One of the major achievements of CMFRI over the entire span of existence is the development and refinement of unique National Marine Fishery data base “Stratified Multistage Random Sampling” method unique to India. With this methodology the Institute is maintaining national marine Fisheries data base from 1950 with a landing of about 50,000t to about 385,000 tons in 2012 comprising about 200 species along the entire coast covering about 8000 km.
Trawl ban a long term management measure. Very few countries in the world are unable to close the fishing operations on a large scale.Over the period CMFRI in association with other research organizations and associations /NGOs is able to close the mechanized fishing for 47 days on both the coasts and the DADF of MOA is able to successfully implement the ban. This measure has long term positive effect.
The institute has developed several bivalve hatchery and culture technologies and Mussel culture became very popular in Kerala with production of about 20000t/Year. The institute has the leading population dynamic teams who undertook stock assessment of several species of fish. The institute has developed breading and seed production technologies for 15 species of high valued ornamental fish.
Artificial reefs for enhancing sustainability of artisanal fisheries and increasing productivity naturally. CMFRI has designed established artificial reefs along Tamilnadu Coast at 50 places. In all places there was increased catch rates up to even 10 times. This also may be considered as alternative rehabilitation option while allaying the fears of developmental activities like establishment of nuclear plants etc.
During the XI th plan The Institute fully utilized the budget. This has really given a very good encouragement and motivation resulting in the best performance as indicated by the excellent results briefed below.
1. The sustainability of marine fisheries is not a major issue as propagated but the increasing the catch provides livelihood to several million people in India apart from contributing to the national economy, nutritional security of India. CMFRI research is able to integrate with all states with frequent interventions and able to provide timely advises on several issues and enabled the country to manage the marine fisheries in a sustainable manner and forging ahead for enhancement research in our own way in tune with the diverse cultures of the country.
2. Open Sea cage culture Boon to landless. This programme of massive demonstration of open sea cage culture developed and indigenously designed and fabricated by CMFRI for the first time in India was successfully accomplished in most of maritime states with high valued local species .This has lead to massive awareness among fishers, and state officials. However to propagate further this on large scale commercial scale, open water leasing policies have to be formulated by different maritime states. Several training programmes involving all states including UT of Lakshadweep were conducted and few farmers already started the commercial operations, as government has come out with a subsidy scheme. Considering that mariculture is only best option to enhance the production of high valued fish in India particularly in the context of promoting the fish as health food “ LOOK INTO THE SEA” is the best option.. In this context seed of the high valued fish which are rare occurrence in the nature are being developed .Breeding of high valued marine fish all over the world is highly challenging and no country processes breeding of not more than 3 or 4 fish. Although we are very late CMFRI is able to focus the attention specifically at different locations and successfully developed the brood stock, induced breeding, seed development and suitable farming technology for four species viz., Cobia, Silver Pompano or American Pomfret, Grouper and Red snapper.
5. Millions of people in India are suffering from Rheumatic arthritic pains. It is heartening to note that CMFRI with concerted and focused research was able to develop Green Mussel extract (GMe) from green mussel and Green Algal extract (GAe) from seaweeds which are highly natural, cheap, cultivable and proved to safely and effectively relieve the pains, and commercialized which is a great service to the society.
6. Yellowfin Tuna pop up tagging. In order to know the stock movement and advising the fishermen regarding their availability, season, abundance of international fish like high valued Yellowfin tuna is very essential. However only very few countries in the world are able to achieve this.. However highly motivated CMFRI scientists have achieved the pop up tagging joining the selective elite group in the world, without any formal training.
7. CMFRI goes open access (eprints@cmfri). CMFRI through the website has launched the open access system by displaying the complete version of more than10,9000 publication to the world community in a most accessible form, which has highly increased the visibility of Indian marine fisheries research to the rest of the world as indicated by the response from 198 countries.
Chlorophyll is the only available parameter which can be directly linked to the fish. Since the reliable chlorophyll data is uniformly available throughout our EEZ through remote sensing satellite, efforts will be focused to develop a model to estimate and forecast the potential fish yield at regular intervals thus increasing the accuracy of potential forecast leading to better management of effort and fishery resources. No other country has attempted such studies.
Marine fish brood stock development and management is most challenging and private hatcheries will not be able to accomplish this task. . Hence it is proposed to establish National Biosecure Marine Fish Brood Bank under the aegis of proposed Centre of excellence in Mariculture at Mandapam. Very little attention was paid to the valuation and evaluation of tropical marine biodiversity, which will be addressed during this plan period.
The Institute is also a leader in climate change research with respect to marine fisheries.