Indian Council of Agricultural Research


ICAR-CMFRI efforts to popularize cage fish farming win recognition

ICAR-CMFRI’s efforts to popularize cage fish farming win recognition

Cage fish farmer associated with ICAR-CMFRI bags prestigious ‘Thozhil Shreshta’ award of Kerala Government

The efforts of the ICAR-Central Marine Fisheries Research Institute (CMFRI), Kochi popularise its cage fish farming technology has won recognition with a cage fish farmer associated with the Institute bagging the prestigious ‘Thozhil Shreshta’ award instituted by the Kerala Government. P M Dinil Prasad, 28, from Kerala’s Kannur district, who won the award for his excellent performance in the fisheries sector, adopted ICAR-CMFRI’s technology and has been undertaking the cage fish farming since 2018. He received the award from Kerala Labour Minister Shri. V Sivankutty on 25th March 2022. Mr Prasad was bestowed with the award that carried a purse of Rs. 1 lakh and a certificate for his tremendous achievement in cage fish farming with good harvest of pearl spot within a short span of three and half years. This was made possible with regular training and guidance imparted by the Mariculture Division of CMFRI headed by Dr Imelda Joseph.


While the CMFRI introduced a 15-cr project funded by the National Fisheries Development Board (NFDB) to set up 500 cage farming units in Kerala in 2018, Dinil Prasad was the first to receive a unit under the project and upon CMFRI’s guidance he launched the farming in Anjarakandi river in Kannur. Presently, he undertakes farming of 7000 pearl spots in seven cages with a size four metre each width and length. At least 150 kg of yield is expected from each cage.Along with cage fish farming, Dinil Prasad also runs a seed production unit of pearl spot and mussel farming. In addition, he provides consultancy service, including cage fabrication, site selection, species identification, etc. to those desiring to start cage fish farming. Around 75 cage culture units were launched in many parts of the Malabar region under Dinil’s consultancy.The young fish farmer said that his strong passion toward cage fish farming and determination were the secrets of his success. “At the initial stage, many people discouraged me for starting an aquaculture enterprise. But, with the success of the venture, they lauded my efforts and willpower and more youngsters started approaching me to emulate this model”, he said adding that he is indebted to ICAR-CMFRI’s support that was crucial to adopt this technology at its best and to secure his livelihood.


COVID restrictions never dampened his spirit as he took to social media to market his harvested crops. “Social media helped me a lot during the lockdown to reach the targeted consumers and sell the fish at a good price”, Dinil said.Dr A Gopalakrishan, Director, ICAR-CMFRI Director expressed his happiness over popularisation of its technology in a way that is highly beneficial to the society. “Cage fish farming is helping to increase domestic fish production across the coastal states of the country. It is hopeful that youngsters are increasingly taking up cage fish farming as their entrepreneurial initiative”, he said.

CMFRI adjudged as best research institute under ICAR

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.