Aquaculture Business Cycle
The value chain within the aquaculture operation includes the following processes/activities:
Each process requires detailed investigation, planning and execution in order to mitigate risk to the aquaculture operation.
RAS is a complex, sophisticated engineering and operating process that is capital intensive. However, it is also the only financially viable way to achieve large scale fish production in South Africa. It is also environmentally responsible due to the following:
• Reduced foot print
• Reduced water requirement
• Improved Feed Conversion Ratio
The complexity of developing the RAS project is not dissimilar to the engineering complexity of a large capital project, such as developing a mine. Thus, the work that must be undertaken at the formative stages of project development will often determine whether the project succeeds or fails. It is not a simple process and so securing the input of professional advisors is paramount in ensuring that both capital and time are not needlessly wasted.
Further, success of the operation is often a function understanding the optimal growth cycle of the selected species. This requires knowledge of the species-specific factors of success:
Common factors: Fish age (life stage), sex ratio, genetics
Culture system: Water temperature, Oxygen saturation levels, Water quality (Suspended Solids, pH, Ammonia, Nitrite, Nitrate, Carbon dioxide, Alkalinity) Feed quality and frequency, Stocking density