Ocean Cage Aquaculture Technology
Ocean-based aquaculture is forecast to be the fastest-growing aquaculture sector in the future, based on increasing demand for seafood products and declining capture fishery landings from the oceans.
Ocean cage culture of marine fish has stimulated the design of new and novel cages for culturing fish in near-shore and offshore environments.
ASA-IM, USB New Uses, and USSEC have worked for more than a decade to develop soy-based, renewable ingredient feeds for the emerging ocean aquaculture industry.
Ongoing research focuses on replacing fishmeal with a combination of soybean meal and soy protein concentrate, alternative lipid regime feeds to spare fish oil, and development of new soybean varieties of potential benefit to the ocean aquaculture industry.
In addition to its feed development work, ASA-IM, USB, and USSEC developed an Ocean Cage Aquaculture Technology (OCAT) project in 2004 that included the design and construction of an ocean cage designed to survive typhoon-strength storms. The OCAT cage is a 100-cubic-meter rigid frame cage capable of culturing up to 10 metric tons of fish per cage.
The cages are designed to be primarily auto-submersible and operate with a number of optional mooring systems.
Feeding demonstrations with the OCAT cage showcased new, soy-based feeds for marine fish.