Contributors to blogpost: Suzie Boxman, Colleen Naughton, Emma Lopez
In this week’s blogpost we learn more about marine aquaponics and the saltwater vegetable sea purslane.
Farmed fish have gotten an undeservedly bad reputation. True, in the past they were responsible for some pollution, but present day aquaculture has come a long way and now is a necessary component to aquatic animal production. Production from wild caught seafood simply cannot keep up with current seafood demands and will not be able to supply the future demands of a growing population. Alternatively, according to the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations, aquaculture now safely produces half of all fish for human consumption. Fish is vital protein source for billions of people globally and 1 serving can provide 50-60% of an adult’s daily protein requirements. Check out this article to learn more about how important aquaculture is to global food security. It is time for people to consider aquaculture as the preferred method of fish production just as farmed chicken, beef, and pork are standard practice.
Enter aquaponics. These land-based system eliminate the potential for pollution and have captivated hobbyists and scientists worldwide. One-part aquaculture, one-part farming, and one-part engineering; these systems have something to satisfy everyone’s interest. Coinciding with the local-food movement, aquaponics systems have popped up in cities and towns all over the U.S. and abroad, catering to people concerned about where their food comes from. Often producing freshwater fish and vegetables, development of a marine aquaponic system at Mote Aquaculture Research Park in Sarasota, FL challenges the assumption that aquaponic systems must be freshwater.
Check out this video to learn more about the marine aquaponic system and the saltwater vegetable sea purslane. Sea purslane is a coastal plant that has been used for centuries in traditional medicines and considered to have a high nutritional value. In an age of superfoods and expert marketing, sea purslane is just waiting to be discovered by the spotlight. Watch out spinach!
Questions to consider while watching this week’s video:
- Do you think that farming fish through aquaponics or other aquaculture systems is a sustainable method of seafood production and why? If someone was skeptical of the safety and/or environmental impact of farmed fish, how would you support them or try to convince them it was safe?
- Aquaponic system are being constructed in developing countries. Based on the issues with complex water treatment and sanitation systems, do you think aquaponic systems are appropriate for developing countries? What is needed to ensure these systems succeed overseas? Please give examples.
- How can this video be improved?