Fish eat fish – why aquaculture cannot work

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Back on the fish bandwagon. Many people claim that aquaculture, raising fish in “farms”, will allow us to continue to eat fish without the depleting the oceans reserves. The problem is that fish eat fish. Half of the fish we consume today come from aquaculture, but those fish require fish to live.

To produce 1 pound of salmon, you need 5 pounds of feed produced from smaller fish. So, while salmon in the wild may be less fished, the smaller fish, on which they and other fish rely are being fished to extinction. The solution, proposed by some, is to produce feed for aquaculture fish on land or via genetically modified crops (certain algae) for example. All this for smoked salmon!

It might be easier to simply eat less fish.

Article (paid) in Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States September 8th, 2009

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