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Promotion of native species of Shrimp such as Indian white shrimp, need to be a priority to avoid our single species model of farming with exotic vannamei said Shri Giriraj Singh, Hon’ble Union Minister, Ministry of Fisheries, Animal Husbandry & Dairying, Govt. of India, Muttukkadu, Chennai

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Shri.Giriraj Singh, Hon’ble Union Minister of Fisheries, Animal Husbandry & Dairying (MOFAHD), Govt. of India visited Muttukadu Experimental facilities of ICAR-CIBA on 21st January 2021 and had discussions with scientist on the new development in R&D at the institute. Mr Singh visited the shrimp and finfish hatchery complex located at the Muttukadu Experimental Station of CIBA, showed special interest in the breeding and farming of Indian white shrimp (Penaeus indicus) initiated by CIBA. He has emphasized to initiate a jump start programme on the hatchery production of seed and farming of P. indicus, for the benefit of Indian shrimp farmers. After visiting finfish hatchery, he appreciated the initiatives by CIBA in the development of indigenous hatchery technologies of farmed fishes, and handed-over the seabass seeds produced by CIBA to the farmers and complimented that CIBA is working in tandem with the sectoral requirements.

Subsequently an interaction was meeting held led by the Hon’ble Union Minister in which Shri. Rajiv Ranjan IAS, Union Fisheries Secretary, Dr.K.Gopal, Principal Secretary, Fisheries, Govt. of Tamil Nadu, Shri.J.Balaji, IAS, Join Secretary, MOFAHD, Dr.Mrs.Kripa, Member-Secretary, Coastal Aquaculture Authority, Govt. of India, scientists, farmers and development department officials participated. Dr K. K. Vijayan Director, CIBA highlighted the recent R&D accomplishments, recognitions received by the institute and CIBA adopted/mentored farmers/entrepreneurs. He flagged the importance of promoting Indian white Shrimp (Penaeus indicus) species for farming in India to compliment the exotic vannamei and elaborated CIBA’s R&D initiatives on the species and a road map for developing a selective breeding programme on a consortium mode. Farming of native indicus would help the sustainable growth of the Indian shrimp farming, presently with a single species focus of exotic vannamei shrimp.

The Honorable Minister asked the scientists and fishery ministry officials to come out with a ‘Fast Track mode’ programme on breeding and seed production of Indian White shrimp (Penaeus indicus) and promotion of its farming. Subsequently a flagship programme on Selective breeding of Indian white shrimp should be implemented, preferable through a consortium, where CIBA can lead the programme as a R&D partner. Similarly, brood stock development and seed production of brackishwater finfish candidate species like Seabass, Milk fish, Pearl spot are very important for diversification of the sector and the Ministry of Fisheries would support CIBA initiatives, he declared during the interaction. During the occasion, the Minister released the import substitute of shrimp larval feed using ‘Black Soldier Fly meal’ developed by CIBA, partnering with a ‘Soldier Fly Startup’, the Minister appreciated the startup initiative by a team of young graduates from Anna University, Chennai.

Later the Minister honoured the CIBA’s clientele M/S.Nambikkai Fish Farmers Group, Tamil Nadu and M/S.Sai Aqua Feeds, Andhra Pradesh, who were awarded by National Fisheries Development Board (NFDB), with the “Best Fisheries Self Help Group-2020” and “Best Fisheries Enterprise Award-2020” for their successful ventures on ‘fish waste-to-wealth’ and ‘feed processing technology’ of ICAR-CIBA respectively.