Fisheries Secretary Jatindra Nath Swain, IAS visits ICAR-CMFRI, says Govt. keen to developing seaweed economy
Shri. Jatindra Nath Swain, IAS, Secretary, Department of Fisheries, Government of India and Dr Jujjavarapu Balaji, IAS, Joint Secretary (Marine Fisheries) visited the ICAR-Central Marine Fisheries Research Institute (CMFRI), Kochi on 24th September 2021. They interacted with the scientists of the CMFRI Headquarters in Kochi and those from various regional research stations of the Institute across the country via online.
Shri. Jatindra Nath Swain said that the Central government
is looking forward to develop a sustainable economy through highly prospective seaweed
cultivation. At a time when climate change is increasingly posing a major threat
to human life across the globe, cultivating seaweed, which is one of the
natural methods to mitigate the global crisis, would help boost the economy and
reduce the impact of climate crisis as well, he said. An additional livelihood
option, seaweed farming will play a major role in the socio-economic upliftment
of traditional fishermen during this difficult time.
The Secretary asked the ICAR-CMFRI to set up a seedbank of seaweeds to popularise the practice among the coastal region. Marine scientists should come up with ways for capacity development to enhance seaweed cultivation on large-scale. The Pradhan Mantri Matsya Sampada Yojana (PMMSY) has a special thrust for promotion of the seaweed farming, Jatindra Nath Swain, who was on a visit to Kerala to understand the issues and challenges being faced by the sector after taking over the portfolio four months ago, said.
Doubling seafood export
Elaborating on the country’s ambitious plan in marine fisheries sector, the Fisheries secretary said that India is eying doubling the seafood export in the next five years. “We are hopeful of achieving this target by exploring innovative ways to increase the production that will certainly upscale the country’s per capita income”, he said. Technological development is crucial in this regard especially for areas such as seed production and other hatchery infrastructure for diversified mariculture activities, Mr. Swain said.
“The government is in supportive of promoting the cage fish farming, which is also an alternative source of income, in a big way that would help the traditional fishermen to double their income”, Mr Swain said and lauded the efforts of CMFRI to give a major boost to this practice across the coastal states.
Sea ranching initiatives, a practice of stocking seeds into the sea, of green tiger shrimps should be strengthened by extending it into more areas as the practice by CMFRI proving a huge success in the Palk Bay for the past few years for maintaining a sustainable stock of the species and their conservation, the top fisheries official said.
Dr A Gopalakrishnan, Director of ICAR-CMFRI apprised them of various research activities being pursued and achievements of the Institute.
CMFRI adjudged as best research institute under ICAR
CMFRI wins ICAR’s highest award
The Central Marine Fisheries Research Institute (CMFRI) has been adjudged as the best research institute of the Indian Council of Agricultural Research (ICAR). The CMFRI won the Sardar Patel Outstanding ICAR institutions award, the highest award of the ICAR in the category of the large institutions with a cash prize of Rs 10 Lakhs, a Silver Plaque, Certificate and Citation.This is in recognition of CMFRI’s excellent performance in marine fisheries research during the period from 2014 to 2019.
This is the second time CMFRI bagging this prestigious award. Various cutting edge research activities including development of mariculture technologies such as open sea cage fish farming, seaweed farming, integrated multi-trophic aquaculture (IMTA) and breeding and seed production technologies for marine food fish and ornamental fishes which were aimed to enhance the income of fishermen helped CMFRI achieving the highest ranking among more than 110 agricultural and allied research institutes in the country. CMFRI’s efforts on preparing a range of policy guidelines, including the works on minimum legal size (MLS), National Policy on Mariculture and ecosystem-based management towards the sustainable utilization of marine fisheries resources were well appreciated. Its research initiatives in developing nutraceutical products from marine organisms to treat type 2 diabetes, arthritis, obesity, thyroid and hypertension also played a major role in winning the award. In addition, the institute exhibited leadership in winning several externally funded research projects such as National Brood bank for Cobia and Silver pompano and a Centre of Excellence and Innovation funded by the DBT. The institute also obtained many patents during the period.