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Is intensification a viable way for pond culture in Central and Eastern Europe?

Author(s): Gergő Gyalog | László Váradi | Dénes Gál

Journal: Aquaculture, Aquarium, Conservation & Legislation
ISSN 1844-8143

Volume: 4;
Issue: 5;
Start page: 584;
Date: 2011;
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Keywords: Economics of intensification | complete feeds in pond culture | intensive pond culture

Today’s Central and Eastern European aquaculture is based on low production intensity pondculture dominated by traditional extensive and semi-intensive carp-based polyculture technologies, useof complete feeds in pond culture is not prevalent. Meanwhile pond culture in other parts of the Worldhas gone through an intensification process, nowadays high-intensity monoculture technologies dominatein pond farming. Use of complete feeds and application of higher stocking rates have doubled-tripledyields compared to traditional extensive, semi-intensive farming methods. Economic analysis of Asianfarms shows that intensification leads to increased profits per unit area and decreased profitability. Thecalculation of financial results of fish farming technologies of different intensity level show the sameeffect of intensification on viability in Hungary as in Asia: high feeding and stocking rate result inoutstanding profit per unit area and decreased profit margin at the same time. Rising land prices (andrents), fees for usage of water, decrease in area-based subsidies can push the Central and EasternEuropean pond aquaculture toward intensification as high intensity fish rearing in ponds may offer goodalternative for those farmers who have limited access to land (pond area) and water. However one musttake the increased risks of high intensity and must have good managing abilities and farming expertisewith special regard to water quality and biomass management.
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