EU aquaculture program Fishboost to conclude

EU aquaculture project Fishboost led by Norwegian firm Nofirma concludes this month after five years working to improve European aquaculture. 

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The NOK 75 million (€7.7m) project started in 2014 with the goal of improving European aquaculture of Atlantic salmon, common carp, European seabass, gilthead seabream, rainbow trout and turbot.

“Fishboost is one of the last projects granted funding under the EU’s seventh framework program. High requirements were set for the dissemination of findings and large geographical spread in the project. The partners in the project agreed that only the parties that find a result or innovation own it, but that knowledge about the result must be shared,” said Nofirma in a press release.

Tools developed during the program include gene maps and thousands of genomic markers; genomic markers are used in genomic selection, which is more accurate than traditional breeding. Fishboost has also developed better selection and phenotyping methods to increase production efficiency.

Norwegian industrial partner Salmobreed sees potential for knowledge transfer between species: “Much has been done to develop indirect methods for measuring feed utilization and production efficiency on several of the species in Fishboost. The research done on rainbow trout has a particularly high transfer value to salmon,” said Haavard Bakke, project manager at Salmobreed.

Scientists from 14 research institutions, 11 companies and an NGO took part in the project. Nofima and other research partners have written new applications to continue their work, and Nofima has since been awarded two new EU projects in the field.


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