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Tilapia production grows 80% in ten years in Brazil

The production of most cultivated fish in Brazil, tilapia ( Oreochromis niloticus ), increased by 80% between 2005 and 2015. Growth is a result of modernization and intensification of production both in cages in reservoirs as in dug ponds.

The data are the result of the project "Socioeconomic Impacts of tilapicultura in Brazil", executed by Embrapa Pesca e Aquicultura (TO) and partners. There are seven major poles of production of the species: Orós and Castanhão, in Ceará; Submédio and Baixo São Francisco, on the border of the states of Bahia, Pernambuco and Alagoas; Ilha Solteira, on the border of São Paulo with Mato Grosso do Sul, North and West regions of Paraná and Baixo Vale do Itajaí, in Santa Catarina.

Favorable climate, rusticity of the species, high demand and the good result in intensive crops are factors that contributed to leverage the production of tilapia in the country.

The regulation of the use of public waters for intensive fish farming in net tanks also boosted cultivation, being the species responsible for 90% of the requests of aquaculture areas in the country. 

The study also detected increased technification of production and professionalism of producers in many poles, which contributed to a substantial increase in productivity. "The use of equipment, associated with management practices with control of the cultivation parameters, allowed the densification of the production in excavated nurseries. With this, there was an increase in productivity, "says Renata Barroso, Embrapa Fish and Aquaculture (TO). 

According to the expert, the greater productivity is due to the fact that fish farmers understand that in order to be competitive and stay in business, it is necessary to have control of the business, use cost recording mechanisms, be more careful about handling and Quality of drinking water.

The profitability of tilapicultura, which can vary from 10% to 20%, has led to greater investment in equipment that improves water quality and automates the cultivation, as well as in premium rations. At more advanced poles, scientists observed the use of aerators, fans that increase the amount of oxygen in the water, allowing more animals to be raised in the same space, automatic feeders, classifiers and counters.

Source: Portal Brasil, with information from the Ministry of Agriculture