Fish Farming is tough work and it isn’t always successful.
According to Recirculating Aquaculture 4th Edition authors Michael B. Timmons, Todd Guerdat Brian J. Vinci, here are the top 8 reasons why aquaculture farms fail.
- The fish go into the water BEFORE a functioning alarm system or backup generator is in place and has been tested.
- The rule of life in fish farming: “loose water or loose flow => loose fish” is not taken seriously.
- Under appreciation for the sensitivity of the biological system.
- Inadequate system size to pay capital/operating cost and achieve economies of scale…..farms are just too small for economic viability.
- Operating without a business plan or the implemented business plan is based on un-realistic projections.
- Under capitalization. Sometimes farms mistakenly believe that they will receive additional funding (government-backed loan, grant programs, investors) that has not yet been guaranteed. Once fish farm construction has begun, the farm will have great difficulty succeeding if all investment money is not provided. Under capitalization will also be a severe problem if construction and start-up take longer than planned or cost overruns are encountered, which can consume all capital before any fish are produced.
- Severe overestimation of the system’s true carrying capacity (and thus production capacity), which is sometimes the result of poor engineering design and sometimes due to a lack of understanding of all limits on carrying capacity (maximum feeding biomass) and production efficiency (production: standingbiomass).
- Inadequate access to niche market fish and and an inability to obtain premium price.