Asia Project: Cambodia & Vietnam

University of Connecticut

Title: Improving Food Security, Household Nutrition, and Trade Through Sustainable Aquaculture and Aquatic Resource Management in Cambodia and Vietnam

Theme: Enhanced Trade Opportunities for Global Fishery Markets

Lead US University: University of Connecticut – Avery Point

Host Country & Partner Institutions:
US: University of Rhode Island
Vietnam: Can Tho University
Cambodia: Inland Fisheries Research and Development Institute

Current Research (2016-2018):

The productive Mekong fisheries are essential to the food security and nutrition of the 60 million people of the Lower Mekong Basin. Fish, from capture and culture, are a significant source of income and food security in Cambodia and Vietnam. The rapid growth of freshwater aquaculture in both countries represents an opportunity to improve the livelihood of their residents. Climate change, however, coupled with population growth and overexploitation of fisheries, poses a threat to productivity and viability of sustainable aquaculture operations. This project builds on past AquaFish work through five integrated investigations that support the development of sustainable aquaculture, enhancement of trade, and improvement of aquatic resource management, with a focus on sustainable snakehead aquaculture after the ban of snakehead farming was lifted in Cambodia in April 2016. To address the sustainability of the popular snakehead industry, researchers will work to develop alternative cost-effective feeds, compare growth performance and survival rate of different snakehead strains, and improve value-added processing techniques typically undertaken by women. A household survey will explore the availability of fish, as well as perceived versus actual benefits of consuming fish. The results of these efforts will inform strategies and policies that address nutritional deficits, particularly for women and children in Cambodia.

Current Research (2016 – 2018):

  • Pellet Feed Improvements Through Vitamin C Supplementation for Snakehead Culture (16SFT01UC) – Work Plan
  • Sustainable Snakehead Aquaculture in Cambodia (16IND01UC) – Work Plan
  • Genetic Diversity of Striped Snakehead (Channa striata) in Cambodia and Vietnam (16QSD01UC) – Work Plan
  • Enhancing Food Safety and Household Nutrition of Women and Children Through Aquaculture and Capture Fisheries in Cambodia and Vietnam in the Dry Season (16FSV01UC) – Work Plan
  • Guidance and Policy Recommendations for Sustainable Snakehead Aquaculture and Aquatic Resource Management in Cambodia and Vietnam (16PDV01UC) – Work Plan

Research (2013-2015):

Current research in Cambodia and Vietnam focuses on poverty alleviation and food security improvement through sustainable aquaculture development and aquatic resources management. With a strong emphasis on policy change and governance, this project specifically addresses the interconnection between these issues and climate change. The rapid growth of freshwater aquaculture in both countries represents an opportunity to improve food security and income generation. However, climate change, coupled with population growth and overexploitation of fisheries, pose a threat to productivity and viability of aquaculture operations in a region that largely lacks capacity to adapt. This project will build on past CRSP work through six integrated investigations. An analysis of the impact of climate change on fisheries value chains will provide a better understanding of the issues facing the fish industry and inform adaptive management options and policies. To address the sustainability of the popular snakehead industry, researchers will work to develop alternative cost-effective feeds and improve value-added processing techniques typically undertaken by women. Training local scientists, managers, and regulators to estimate the aquaculture carrying capacity of their region may help reduce the ecological impacts of farming operations. A household survey will explore the availability of fish, as well as perceived vs. actual benefits of consuming fish. The results of these efforts will inform strategies that address nutritional deficits, particularly for women and children in Cambodia. The work undertaken through this project will be sustained after the life of the project by partner organizations and projects in Cambodia and Vietnam.

  • Impacts of Climate Change on Fish Value Chains in the Lower Mekong Basin of Cambodia and Vietnam -13MER03UC (Final Report)
  • Alternative Feeds and Processing for Freshwater Aquaculture Species -13SFT03UC (Final Report)
  • Sustainable Snakehead Aquaculture Development in the Lower Mekong River Basin of Cambodia -13IND02UC (Final Report)
  • Estimating Carrying Capacity for Aquaculture in Cambodia -13WIZ01UC (Final Report)
  • Enhancing Food Security and Household Nutrition of Women and Children with a Focus on Nutrient Dense Commonly Consumed Fish from Capture Fish and Aquaculture in Cambodia* -13HHI02UC (Final Report)
  • Policy Recommendations to Improve Food Security and Household Nutrition through Sustainable Aquaculture and Aquatic Resource Management in Cambodia and Vietnam -13PDV01UC (Final Report)

 

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