Approaches to Genetic Improvement of Fish in Africa Workshop

Edinburgh, Scotland

Globally, approximately 800 million people depend on fisheries and aquaculture for their livelihoods. Fish supply-demand research suggests that aquaculture production may need to double by 2030 to meet the world’s growing demand, and need, for a supply of affordable, safe and nutritious fish. Projected fish supply deficits are large globally, but Africa and Asia will face particularly significant shortfalls unless investments are made in sustainable aquaculture growth. Aquaculture, in particular, has tremendous potential to promote food and nutrition security, increase incomes, be an environmentally sustainable supply of animal source food, and meet the global demand for fish.

WorldFish will be organizing the workshop on "Approaches to Genetic Improvement of Fish in Africa" in Edinburgh, Scotland from 12 to 16 August 2019. The four-day workshop funded by the International Fund for Agricultural Development (IFAD) will be led by Dr. John Benzie, WorldFish Program Leader of Sustainable Aquaculture.

The workshop aims to serve as a platform in providing the opportunity to researchers involved in active or near-planned genetic improvement programs in aquaculture in Africa the opportunity to discuss the approaches to genetic improvement in light of the latest developments in genetics and with respect to the practical issues they confront. It will be addressing issues of increased sustainable food production in the face of environmental change and challenging policy environments. 

The expected outcome of this workshop is to produce a short record of the meeting to identify the key issues confronting the development of practical genetic improvement programs in Africa and possible solutions to those.

WorldFish, over the three-year period through Improving the technological foundations for sustainable aquaculture project, funded by International Fund for Agricultural Development (IFAD), has improved the strains of tilapia, Indian carp and African catfish – important species of food fish that are also easy to farm – become more widely available, are farmed sustainably and are distributed equitably.