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Genetic improvement for the development of efficient global aquaculture: A personal opinion review

Gjedrem, Trygve
Aquaculture 2012 v.344-349 pp. 12-22
animal breeders, aquaculture, attitudes and opinions, disease resistance, farmed animal species, feed conversion, food production, genetic improvement, land resources, Norway
It has been exciting to follow the rapid development of aquaculture production in Norway, and internationally, since 1971. As an animal breeder I am particularly impressed with the genetic gain obtained for growth rate, and also for disease resistance in several aquatic species, which is five to six times higher than what has been achieved in terrestrial farm animals. This is illustrated in five selected projects I have been involved in. The sad story is, however, that only less than 10% of the world's aquaculture production is based on genetically improved stocks. The big challenge for the future is to develop more selective breeding programs for existing and new emerging aquaculture species in order to increase the production of this nutritious food source and to improve the efficiency of the use of feed, water, land and labor resources.