SAMUDRA Report

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Issue No:62
  • :0973-1121
  • :July
  • :2012
  • :English

 It is a fabulous place: when the tide is in, a wave-churned basin,
creamy with foam, whipped by the combers that roll in from the
whistling buouy on the reef. But when the tide goes out the little
world becomes quiet and lovely. The sea is very clear and the bottom
becomes fantastic with hurrying, fighting, feeding, breeding animals.

—from Cannery Row by John Steinbeck

 

Malaysia : Aquaculture

Caged in

The aquaculture industry in Malaysia is plagued by a range of problems that need to be addressed immediately


This article has been written by Azrilnizam Omar (azrilo@gmail.com) of Sahabat Alam Malaysia (SAM)—Friends of the Earth Malaysia


Aquaculture has a long history in Malaysia. Initially, aquaculture started as a traditional practice, integrated with agriculture and done on a small scale. Around 1970, the aquaculture industry began to grow in the country when semi-intensive shrimp farming was introduced in Johor State. Cage culture also began to be developed at that time, followed by cockle and mussel farming.

Between 1970 and 1980, the aquaculture industry collapsed due to land degradation in ponds as a result of increased acidity in the soil, which interferes with the immune system of organisms, and affects the rate of production of livestock and aquaculture resources.

Aquaculture activities began to increase rapidly in early 1990 with the introduction of high-capacity commercial aquaculture and supplements in fish and shrimp hatcheries set up by the government and private companies.

A widespread shrimp disease hit aquaculture farms in many countries in 1999 and led to the closure of farms and hatcheries in Malaysia. Poor...