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Aquaculture Week 2022

September 26, 2022

Join us for Aquaculture Week to learn how marine aquaculture—or farmed seafood—is vital for supporting our nation’s seafood production and year-round jobs, enhancing coastal resilience, and more.

The indigenous plant and ground cover, ʻākulikuli The indigenous plant and ground cover, ʻākulikuli, is also a popular ingredient in salads. Credit: Kauaʻi Sea Farms

Welcome to National Aquaculture Week, when we celebrate those who increase our access to fresh seafood while protecting coastal resources. Be sure to check back every day this week for exciting new features.

Aquaculture Features

Aquaculture: Policy and Possibilities

Man checks on oyster bed at Wellfleet Oyster Farm
Wellfleet Massachusetts Oyster Farm. Credit: NOAA Fisheries/Adriane Michaelis

Aquaculture is important for nutrition, for local jobs, for climate-ready food systems, and for collaboration between wild capture and aquaculture to put U.S. seafood back on U.S. plates. In this Dive In With NOAA Fisheries podcast, we talk with Dr. Michael Rubino, NOAA Fisheries’ Senior Advisor for Seafood Strategy and formerly the director of the Office of Aquaculture. He’s been thinking a lot about farmed seafood’s place in the greater industry, and how technology and innovation have made it safer and more sustainable. Recently, he published an article about aquaculture policy considerations outlining some opportunities and challenges facing it in the future. 

Listen to the podcast

Sustainable Seafood from Tide to Table

Weatherly Bates, her husband, and two children on the water in their farm stand boat. It is labeled with large signs reading "Farm Stand, Oysters, Kelp, Mussels."
The Bates family on their “honor system” farm stand boat, a creative way that Alaska Shellfish Farms increases access to fresh seafood. Credit: Alaska Shellfish Farms

The Tide to Table series profiles members of the aquaculture community, who provide valuable jobs and increase access to fresh, sustainably sourced seafood in the United States. 

Learn more about sustainable seafood from the Tide to Table series

Tide to Table: Carteret Community College Aquaculture Technology

Two students pull a trawling net in Bogue Sound, as a third student looks on.
Carteret Community College Aquaculture Technology students pull a trawling net through Bogue Sound, just offshore from the campus lab. Credit: Carteret Community College

Carteret Community College’s aquaculture program is teaching sustainable marine science and business skills to future growers in North Carolina.

Carteret Community College's aquaculture program

NOAA Fisheries Releases FY22 Alaska Aquaculture Accomplishments Report

Monitoring work at Salty Lady Seafood farm. Credit: NOAA Fisheries.
Monitoring work at Salty Lady Seafood farm. Credit: NOAA Fisheries.

Alaska Regional Office and Alaska Fisheries Science Center continue coordinated efforts to prioritize projects and actions to support the growing Alaska aquaculture industry.

NOAA Fisheries FY22 Alaska Aquaculture Accomplishments Report

Tide to Table: Swell Oyster Co.

A hand holding four Swell Oysters in the shell. The four oysters are market-size and take up the person's entire hand.
Market-size Atlantic Oysters, grown by Swell Oyster Co. of Hampton Harbor, New Hampshire. Credit: Swell Oyster Co.

Swell Oyster Co. is developing an oyster flavor profile that has never been tasted before, on the first and only oyster farm in Hampton Harbor, New Hampshire. They are a company of firsts run by “two surfers who love the ocean.”

Swell Oyster Co.

Video: 'No Shell Left Behind'

Oyster shells in a large container, ready to be recycled.
Oyster shells like these can be recycled into habitat for future generations of shellfish. Credit: NOAA

The Oyster Recovery Partnership is rebuilding habitats in the waters of the Chesapeake Bay. It is working to reverse poor water quality through a Shell Recycling Alliance to help restore wild oyster reefs.

Watch "No Shell Left Behind"

Tide to Table: Barrier Beauties

A raw bar with oysters on ice, next to a glass of champagne and two mignonette sauce options for the oysters.
After raw oysters from Barrier Beauties are enjoyed by restaurant patrons, the empty shells are often recycled into new oyster habitat. Credit: Barrier Beauties

Barrier Beauties is breaking new ground in East Galveston Bay—founder Hannah Kaplan was the first aquaculture grower to file an application with the Texas Parks and Wildlife Department. Only recently legalized for permitting in Texas, oyster aquaculture drew Kaplan’s interest because of its substantial positive effects on the environment.

Barrier Beauties

Webinar: 'North Carolina’s Shellfish Aquaculture Industry: Climate Resilience and Engagement Best Practices'

Oyster bags floating on top of the water at sunset.
Cape Hatteras Oyster Company. Credit: North Carolina Sea Grant/Sarah Spiegler

Developing a resilient North Carolina shellfish aquaculture industry includes factoring in climate change and establishing best practices for communication and engagement.

Registration is now closed.

Enhancing Aquaculture Literacy

An oyster farmer on a power boat drives past several floating oyster cages.
An oyster farmer heads back to their farm after dropping off fresh oysters at a tour boat on the Damariscotta River in Maine. Credit: Mississippi-Alabama Sea Grant Consortium/LaDon Swann

NOAA Fisheries, the National Sea Grant Office, and the NOAA Office of Education have partnered on a new aquaculture literacy webpage to enhance public understanding of aquaculture. Aquaculture literacy refers to an individual or a community’s familiarity with information about aquaculture and related environmental, economic, and social topics. 

Aquaculture Literacy

Tide to Table: Alaska Shellfish Farms

Two Alaska Shellfish Farms oysters, shucked and arranged on a bed of snow outdoors, next to a biodegradable plastic bag of oysters and an oyster cage.
Two Glacier Point Oysters, aquacultured in the Kachemak Bay by Alaska Shellfish Farms. Credit: Alaska Shellfish Farms

Millions of acres of untouched wilderness surround the Kachemak Bay growing area of Alaska Shellfish Farms. Located in Halibut Cove, Alaska, the bay is fed by glaciers that merge with the northern Pacific Ocean to create ideal growing conditions for the oysters, mussels, and varieties of seaweed cultivated on site.

Alaska Shellfish Farms

Hawaiian Fishpond Kicks Off State’s First Sea Cucumber Aquaculture

Dark reddish sea cucumber with spikes held be someone's hand.
This sea cucumber, called namako in Japanese cuisine, could help revitalize and provide a revenue source for Hawaiian fishponds. Credit: NOAA Fisheries/Joseph Bennington-Castro

This NOAA-supported project finds an environmentally restorative export product in Hawaiian sea cucumbers.

Hawaiian Fishpond Kicks Off State’s First Sea Cucumber Aquaculture

Tide to Table: Kauaʻi Sea Farms

A rainbow over the Nomilo Fishpond on a sunny day.
In Hawaii’s historic Nomilo Loko Iʻa, or Nomilo Fishpond, family-owned Kauaʻi Sea Farms specializes in growing clams, sea cucumbers, and edible seaweed. Credit: Kauaʻi Sea Farms

Restorative aquaculture is the practice of growing beneficial crops, such as shellfish and edible seaweed, that benefit the surrounding ecosystem. Located in an extinct volcanic caldera on the island of Kauaʻi, this farm combines modern sustainable aquaculture practices with ancient food production philosophies.

Kauaʻi Sea Farms

Tide to Table: Monterey Bay Seaweeds

Decoratively arranged glass jars of water, containing various Monterey Bay Seaweeds.
Monterey Bay Seaweeds are available year-round and harvested to order; customers receive fresh, raw seaweed that is delivered alive. Credit: Monterey Bay Seaweeds

Monterey Bay Seaweeds cultivates west coast dulse, sea lettuce and ogo, which are all delicious additions to bar menus, culinary preparations as well as desserts. They are sustainably farmed in land-based tanks and harvested to order.

Monterey Bay Seaweeds

Aquaculture Meets UN Sustainability Goals

Cherrystone oysters in buckets. One worker in gloved hands is carrying an additional bucket.
Using sustainable aquaculture to increase our fresh seafood supply can boost the ecosystem and the economy. Credit: NOAA Sea Grant

If done correctly, aquaculture increases food production, boosts economic growth in coastal and rural areas, and helps keep waterways clean. Explore how aquaculture fits into the 17 Sustainable Development Goals set by the United Nations.

Aquaculture Supports a Sustainable Earth

Last updated by Office of Aquaculture on October 19, 2022