The IDREEM special session was held during Aquaculture Europe in San Sebastian, Spain on 15 October 2014. It included 8 speakers from the IDREEM consortium who provided an insightful and detailed overview of all the activities being carried out by the consortium as well as the preliminary results achieved to date. A full house was peaked with interest throughout the session chaired by Dr. Kenny Black (SAMS) and Dr. Thierry Chopin (University of New Brunswick) with several questions raised after each speech, closed by a lively debate.
Adam Hughes, SAMS, provided a thorough overview of the project’s rationale, the importance of IMTA and its expectations, the current and future activities within the IDREEM consortium and results achieved so far. Growing at approx. 8% per annum for the last 30 years the global aquaculture industry now supplies over 50% of fish and shellfish for human consumption. On the contrary the EU aquaculture industry grows only at approx. 1% per annum and Europe is the world’s largest market for fish and fishery products, importing 16B€ of seafood annually. In this context IMTA offers an opportunity to reduce inputs, maximise productivity and minimise waste, converting waste products into secondary raw materials.
Other speakers from the consortium include Daryl Gunning of DOMMRS who presented the status of implementation of IMTA at the different pilot sites and Dafna Israel of Suf Fish, presenting the first results of her experimental trials with growing grey mullet as bio-remediators in sea bream culture. Richard Corner of Longline Environment ltd. spoke on the importance of computer modelling to aquaculture and IMTA and in connection to this, Joao Ferreira, University of Lisbon, spoke about the environmental effects of Atlantic salmon cage culture modelling and mitigation with IMTA.
In addition to this, other relevant subjects were presented by Angelica Mendoza Beltran of Leiden University who spoke on the status of the assessment of IMTA life cycle and the quantification of its environmental effect and Shirra Freeman from University of Haifa, gave an overview of the preliminary results of her assessment of the economic value of IMTA. Furthermore, Karen Alexander of SAMS presented the social criteria and public acceptance of IMTA, presenting the results of the international survey she conducted the framework of the work package 4 activities, the first of its kind in Europe.
The hall was literally overflowing with interested audience standing in the corridor to participate in the session, proving that IMTA is a subject that is extremely relevant to European aquaculture.
IDREEM would like to thank all the speakers, participants and audience for making our first conference a great success!
All the presentations can be found here.