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Akvaplan-niva contributes to aquaculture broodstock of lumpfish and wolffish

A digital kick-off meeting for the project BESTBROOD (Identification of broodstock performance indicators and markers to boost the aquaculture of emerging fish species) took place this week. The project brings together a consortium of 7 organizations from Norway, Spain, Greece and Italy. The consortium partners hold high expertise in reproductive biology and biotechnology of the emerging species in focus: lumpfish, spotted wolfish, greater amberjack and Senegalese sole. Nord University in Norway is the lead partner of the project which is is co-funded by the BlueBio ERA-NET under the Horizon 2020 programme and different national funding agencies.

Broodstocks are the basis of the aquaculture industry and their productivity has an impact throughout the entire value chain until the final consumer product. However, broodstock research is usually limited due to the prohibitive costs of working with large and expensive specimens.

The main objective of the project is to boost the economic feasibility of emerging aquaculture species by improving the broodstocks reproductive performance. This will be achieved through the utilisation of innovative breeding techniques and biotechnologies. During the course of the project the partners will develop reproductive performance markers and bioindicators and test new biotechnologies for fish breeding of the 4 selected emerging fish species for the European aquaculture. All the four species are in an early commercial stage, but all have showed suitability for farming, high economic value and market demand. A future increase in the production is dependent on tackling the difficulties with broodstock performance that presently limit the supply of good quality gametes and fertilized eggs for the aquaculture industry

As a result, the BESTBROOD will lead to a more stable and predictable supply of high volumes of high-quality eggs for the production of juveniles to meet market demands for sustainability, and increase Europe’s aquaculture competitiveness.

The project will run for 3 years, until August 2023 and has a total budget of 1 900 000 €. The project is led by Nord University. Akvaplan-niva will contribute to the work on wolffish and lumpfish. 

More information on the Project may be found here: https://bluebioeconomy.eu/tag/aquaculture/

Project contact: Jose Beirão jose.beirao-dos-santos@nord.no (Project coordinator)