The Israeli Journal of Aquaculture - Bamidgeh 54(2), 2002
The Annual Dan Popper Symposium


“RAS-POTENTIAL ”: A TOOL FOR ANALYZING PRODUCTION AND FINANCIAL PERFORMANCE OF RECIRCULATING FISH CULTURE SYSTEMS


Daniel Conijeski, Noam Mozes*

Israel Oceanographic and Limnological Research , National Center for Mariculture, P.O.Box 1212, Eilat 88112, Israel

Abstract

Recirculating aquaculture systems (RAS) have generated much interest in recent years due to their ability to raise fish in a controlled environment. Further, fish density can be high in RAS, resulting in high yields and reducing the investment and extent of culture units and associated buildings. Because RAS conserve heat and water, the growing season of many commercial species can be extended, there is flexibility in locating the RAS and water costs are reduced. Notwithstanding these advantages, the technology of RAS is still poorly understood by many farmers. The high investment, coupled with a lack of comprehensive information on the industrial and economic performance of these systems, has raised skepticism about the economic competitiveness of this technology.

The National Center for Mariculture, together with the Fisheries and Aquaculture Department of the Israeli Ministry of Agriculture, has developed a standard form for evaluating commercial RAS called “RAS-Potential”. RAS-Potential involves an official set of production and economical indicators to help both private parties and the government make investment decisions. These indicators provide the means to compare technologies, to benchmark fish production costs in RAS and to follow-up standard measurements of performance efficiency of RAS farms over time.

*Corresponding author. E-mail: mozes@ocean.org.il

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