Feb 102015

MAA Annual Business Meeting
The Michigan Aquaculture Association 28th Annual Meeting will be held in conjunction with the Michigan Seafood Summit at the Kellogg Hotel & Conference Center, 219 South Harrison Road, East Lansing, MI (map). The meeting will be conducted over a boxed lunch session on the day of the Summit at the Kellogg Center. An announcement will be made during the Summit regarding meeting location. While the business meeting is open to the public, pre-registration is necessary for food arrangements. For those interested in joining MAA, membership renewal is normally handled at the Annual Meeting. To attend the MAA meeting please fill out both forms below and submit by 3/2/15.
       MAA Membership Form
       MAA Business Meeting Registration

Michigan Seafood Summit

The Michigan Seafood Summit is expected to be an exciting first time event, and includes a full day of presentations on Michigan seafood, production methods, and regulations, while also providing insight towards future needs and opportunities by various experts across the State. The keynote address will be delivered by Peter Payette from Interlochen Public Radio on Seafood and Sustainability.

Morning and afternoon sessions are free and open to the public although pre-registration is encouraged to ensure adequate seating. Registration will begin at 8:00 am with the agenda running from 9:00 am to 4:30 pm, followed by a social and plated dinner event featuring MI produced seafood and beverages prepared and by prominent Michigan chefs. In addition the chefs and producers will lead discussion and answer questions regarding production and preparation of dinner items. Attendance to the dinner is optional, however, cost for the dinner event is $50 per plate. Michigan Seafood Summit details including agenda and registration can be found here.




Oct 232014

Purdue Extension will present a workshop in Rochester to show the benefits of solar energy used on farms and in rural small businesses.

The Solar Energy Applications for Agriculture Workshop will be on Nov. 12 from 8:00 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. at the Fulton County fairgrounds, 1009 W. Third St.

This is an educational program to show how solar energy panels operate, said Chad Martin, an Extension renewable energy specialist.

“There’s been growing interest in adopting solar energy on farms due to the reduced cost of insulation,” Martin said. “So we want to showcase projects that have occurred in Indiana to get farmers and rural small businesses interested in different models of solar photovoltaic and solar hot water insulations.”

Topics and presenters:

* “Welcome and introductions”: Martin, Purdue Department of Agriculture and Biological Engineering.

* “Indiana Utility Demand and Rates Forecast”: Doug Gotham, director of the Indiana Utility Forecasting Group.

* “Solar PV Project Development for Agriculture”: Jim and Michael Straeter, New Holland Rochester Inc. and Ag Technologies Inc.

* “Fulton County REMC Net Metering Program”: Greg Bitterling, member services manager and energy advisor at Fulton REMC.

* “The Tipmont REMC Community Solar PV Project”: Jason Monroe, energy management supervisor at Tipmont REMC.

* “Solar Thermal Hot Water Applications for Agriculture”: Don Frank, owner of Solar UV Solutions LLC.

* “U.S. Department of Agriculture’s REAP Grant and Loan Guarantee Program”: Curtis Johnson, business programs specialist at USDA Rural Development.

* “Solar Installation Tours”: Weaver Farm and the USDA Farm Service Agency for solar energy project tour.

The event is sponsored by New Holland Rochester Inc. and Ag Technologies Inc. Participants must register by Nov. 5, providing full contact information to Martin atmartin95@purdue.edu or by calling 765-496-3964.

Oct 072014

There has been recent interest by the aquaculture/baitfish industry and regulators to develop some type of certification/verification program to ensure that AIS-HACCP/Aquaculture Biosecurity procedures are actually in place and working. Such a certification/verification program does not exist in the North Central Region, thus pilot programs for Michigan and Minnesota will be explored and will be discussed at the workshop.

To continue these efforts Michigan Sea GrantMichigan State University Extension, and the North Central Regional Aquaculture Center (NCRAC) will be offering an Aquatic Invasive Species-Hazard Analysis Critical Control Point (AIS-HACCP)/Aquaculture Biosecurity Workshop that will be held on October 21, 2014 in Clare, Michigan at the Doherty Hotel. The workshop will run from 9:00 am to 4:30 p.m. There is no registration fee for this workshop.

For more information, please contact Ron Kinnunen at kinnune1@msu.edu or (906) 226-3687.

See also: http://msue.anr.msu.edu/news/ais-haccp_aquaculture_biosecurity_workshop_to_be_offered_in_clare

Jul 172014
Photo: Tor-Eddie Fossbakk/The Aquaculture Communications Group, LLC (ACG)

Photo: Tor-Eddie Fossbakk/The Aquaculture Communications Group, LLC (ACG)

A potential RAS research lab is available in Tecumseh, MI for lease or sale.  A brief description is provided below and attached file.
Feel free to post or pass this along to others who might be interested.

Indoor aquaculture research facility for lease or sale.  15,000 gallon RAS (3-tank system) with supporting smaller systems, 3-yrs operating, electronics and pure oxygen, space for additions, $750,000 in assets.   Operating costs $4000/month without labor.  Attractive and negotiable terms.  Tecumseh, Michigan.

For additional information, click here!

Kent Herrick
E-mail: kherrick04@comcast.net
Phone: (734) 323-7498 us casinos that take mastercard



Jul 172014

Aqua GrowersWorld Renowned Aquaponic Expert Shultz will teach critical disciplines necessary to succeed in cutting edge Aquaponic food production systems October 10-12, 2014 in Livonia, Michigan.

Shultz’s intensive 3 day workshop, which is in high demand, is presented and well known throughout the world. Shultz is the Aquaponics Researcher at Lethbridge College in Southern Alberta, Canada and has authored or co-authored more than 20 papers regarding Aquaponics including journal articles, publications in conference proceedings and other articles. In addition, Shultz has given more than 50 presentations at conferences and workshops across the United States, the Caribbean and many other countries. Mr. Shultz is considered one of the leading experts in Aquaponics. us online casinos echeck

Shultz will be covering the following topics including “hands-on” participation:

• Status and Guidelines of Aquaponics
• Water Quality
• Tilapia Production
• Plant Production/Pest Management
• Freshwater Shrimp
• Construction and more

This workshop is being sponsored by Aqua Growers of Livonia Michigan. Registration is available online at:


If you’d like more information about this topic, or to schedule an interview, please call Michele Wallace at

(248) 756-8584 or email Michele at michele(at)aquagrowers(dot)com.

You can read the online version of this press release here.

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Jul 022014

The deadline for comments on the EPA proposed rule (CWA) has been pushed back to October 20, 2014: http://www.regulations.gov/#!documentDetail;D=EPA-HQ-OW-2011-0880-2733

Looking over comments posted so far this indeed is going to be a contentious issue.  According to Regulations.gov there are 3,154 public postings to date divided for and against the rule.  Also a number of the comments asked for the extended deadline in order to gain more time for evaluation.

Click here to see our May 6, 2014 posting.

Jun 032014
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National Aquaculture Association logoThe Internet is becoming increasingly important as an inexpensive marketing tool, but many U.S. fish farmers are hesitant to use electronic media.  The National Aquaculture Association (NAA) and the United Soybean Board are offering an intensive four hour workshop, “Using the Internet to Grow Aquaculture Sales”.  The workshop will provide fish and shellfish producers with the knowledge and skills to use electronic media to showcase their products more successfully, grow their businesses, and help shape the public perception of aquaculture.  An Internet presence is important for all sectors of the aquaculture industry including food fish and shellfish, baitfish, feed producers, sportfish, aquatic plants, and equipment suppliers.

The major portion of the workshop will be devoted to the development of individual websites.  A website is one way to reach new buyers at either minimal or no cost.  Producers will be asked to preregister for the program, will need to complete a pre-workshop form that will provide the information for inclusion on their websites, and bring a laptop computer to the workshop. The NAA will provide some boiler plate information that can be added such as recipes, safe handling, etc.   Experts will be on hand to help growers in easy to understand click by click construction.

Other social media tools such as Twitter, Linkedin, and Facebook will be explored.  Times are changing and there are new strategies.  Facebook makes it easy to post new information photos and events.  Twitter is a way to remind your customers and future customers about your products.  Linkedin helps you grow your identity.   These strategies are out there and they are free!

Four workshops will be offered in 2014.   Each workshop will be offered in conjunction with a local sponsor.  We urge Extension Agents, Sea Grant Specialists, State Aquaculture Coordinators, and producer organizations to consider sponsoring a workshop in their area.  Workshops may be held in conjunction with other activities such as conferences and meetings provided they are presented in their entirety and in the original format and sequencing.   The local sponsor is responsible for securing a meeting room that has a good WI-FI connection, advertising and promoting the workshop, handling all registration tasks, providing any refreshments that may be served and providing a printed contact list for all participants.  The National Aquaculture Association will provide speakers, all program materials, and assist in promoting the program. which online casino pays the best

For further information contact: Linda@thenaa.net   914-330-7678


Jun 032014

The 10th International Conference on Recirculating Aquaculture takes place August 22 – 24, 2014 at the Hotel Roanoke and Conference Center Roanoke, Virginia, USA.

You are invited to participate in the 10th International Conference on Recirculating Aquaculture (ICRA) (August 22-24, 2014), taking place at The Hotel Roanoke and Conference Center in Roanoke, Virginia, USA.

A tentative schedule of speakers is attached (and will be posted soon) and early bird registration fees are still available for this conference. If you register in the next month, you will save $100 off of the regular registration fee.

The biennial International Conference on Recirculating Aquaculture offers a wide scope of aquaculture-related topics including research, enterprise, and discovery; unique opportunities for discussion; and the chance to explore new products and technologies in our trade show.

Join your colleagues in industry, government, and academia to share your successes and learn all about the latest advancements in the field.

Have you considered being an exhibitor at the trade show or becoming a conference sponsor?  For more information, go to http://www.recircaqua.com/tradeshow.html.

For complete information on the conference and online registration, visit our website atwww.recircaqua.com or contact us at aquaconf@gmail.com or call (540) 553-1455.

To opt out of notices for the 10th International Conference on Recirculating Aquaculture, please send an email to aquaconf@gmail.com  with ‘unsubscribe’ in the subject line.

Customer Service

Tenth International Conference on Recirculating Aquaculture
P.O. Box 11736
Blacksburg, Virginia 24062


May 212014

FAO logoNew edition of FAO’s “State of World Fisheries and Aquaculture” released

19 May 2014, Rome – More people than ever before rely on fisheries and aquaculture for food and as a source of income, but harmful practices and poor management threaten the sector’s sustainability, says a new FAO report published today.

According to the latest edition of FAO’s The State of World Fisheries and Aquaculture, global fisheries and aquaculture production totalled 158 million tonnes in 2012 – around 10 million tonnes more than 2010.

The rapid expansion of aquaculture, including the activities of small-scale farmers, is driving this growth in production.

Fish farming holds tremendous promise in responding to surging demand for food which is taking place due to global population growth, the report says.

At the same time, the planet’s oceans – if sustainably managed – have an important role to play in providing jobs and feeding the world, according to FAO’s report.

“The health of our planet as well as our own health and future food security all hinge on how we treat the blue world,” FAO Director-General José Graziano da Silva said. “We need to ensure that environmental well-being is compatible with human well-being in order to make long-term sustainable prosperity a reality for all. For this reason, FAO is committed to promoting ‘Blue Growth,’ which is based on the sustainable and responsible management of our aquatic resources.”

The renewed focus on the so-called “blue world” comes as the share of fisheries production used by humans for food has increased from about 70 percent in the 1980s to a record high of more than 85 percent (136 million tonnes) in 2012.

At the same time per capita fish consumption has soared from 10 kg in the 1960s to more than 19 kg in 2012.

The new report also says fish now accounts for almost 17 percent of the global population’s intake of protein — in some coastal and island countries it can top 70 percent.

FAO estimates that fisheries and aquaculture support the livelihoods of 10–12 percent of the world’s population.

Since 1990 employment in the sector has grown at a faster rate than the world’s population and in 2012 provided jobs for some 60 million people engaged in capture fisheries and aquaculture. Of these, 84 percent were employed in Asia, followed by Africa with about 10 percent.

Capture fisheries stable, aquaculture boom continues

Global marine capture fishery production was stable at about 80 million tonnes in 2012, the new report indicates.

Currently, under 30 percent of the wild fish stocks regularly monitored by FAO are overfished – a reversal in trend observed during the past few years, a positive sign in the right direction.

Just over 70 percent are being fished within biologically sustainable levels. Of these, fully fished stocks – meaning those at or very close to their maximum sustainable production – account for over 60 percent and underfished stocks about 10 percent.

Global aquaculture production marked a record high of more than 90 million tonnes in 2012, including almost 24 million tonnes of aquatic plants. China accounted for over 60 percent of the total share. usa players casinos online

Aquaculture’s expansion helps improve the diets of many people, especially in poor rural areas where the presence of essential nutrients in food is often scarce.

However, the report warns that to continue to grow sustainably, aquaculture needs to become less dependent on wild fish for feeds and introduce greater diversity in farmed culture species and practices.

For example, small-sized species can be an excellent source of essential minerals when consumed whole. However, consumer preferences and other factors have seen a switch towards larger farmed species whose bones and heads are often discarded.

The role of fish is set to feature prominently at the Second International Conference on Nutrition jointly organized by FAO and the World Health Organization (WHO) for 19–21 November 2014 in Rome.

Greater market share for developing countries, more attention to small-scale fishers  video bingo online

Fish remains among the most traded food commodities worldwide, worth almost $130 billion in 2012 – a figure which likely will continue to increase.

An important trend sees developing countries boosting their share in the fishery trade – 54 percent of total fishery exports by value in 2012 and more than 60 percent by quantity (live weight).

This means fisheries and fish farming are playing an increasingly critical role for many local economies. Some 90 percent of fishers are small scale and it is estimated that, overall, 15 percent are women. In secondary activities such as processing, this figure can be as high as 90 percent.

FAO, through the 2014 International Year of Family Farming, is raising the profile of smallholder activities – including fisheries and aquaculture – with an emphasis on improving access to finance and markets, securing tenure rights and protecting the environment. red32 mobile casino

Reducing wastage, curbing harmful practices, improving traceability

An estimated 1.3 billion tonnes of food are lost per year — to about one-third of all food produced. This figure includes post-harvest fish losses, which tend to be greater in small-scale fisheries.

In small-scale fisheries, quality losses are often far more significant than physical losses. Improved handling, processing and value-addition methods could address the technical aspects of this issue, but it is also vital to extend good practices, build partnerships, raise awareness, and develop capacity and relevant policies and strategies.

The report also notes that illegal, unreported and unregulated (IUU) fishing remains a major threat to marine ecosystems and also impacts negatively on livelihoods, local economies and food supplies.

Food chain traceability is increasingly a requirement in major fish markets, especially in the wake of recent scandals involving the mislabelling of food products. FAO provides technical guidelines on certification and ecolabelling which can help producers demonstrate that fish has been caught legally from a sustainably managed fishery or produced in properly run aquaculture facility.

In particular, the report stresses the importance of the Code of Conduct for Responsible Fisheries which, since its adoption almost two decades ago, remains key to achieving sustainable fisheries and aquaculture. The Code promotes the responsible use of aquatic resources and habitat conservation to help boost the sector’s contribution to food security, poverty alleviation and human well-being.

FAO is also promoting “Blue Growth” as a framework for ensuring sustainable and socioeconomically-sensitive management of oceans and wetlands.

At the Global Oceans Action Summit on Food Security and Blue Growth held last month in The Hague, Netherlands, governments and other participants committed to actions focused on tackling climate change, overfishing, habitat loss and pollution in a bid to restore productive, resilient oceans.

FAO’s “The State of World Fisheries and Aquaculture 2014” report is available at:

Information about the FAO Fisheries and Aquaculture Department is available at:

Contact: The FAO Fisheries and Aquaculture Department may be reached by e-mail at: FI-Inquiries@FAO.org


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To Whom it May Concern,

May 6, 2014 – EPA and the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers are publishing for public comment a proposed rule (PR) to expand the definition of the scope of “waters of the United States” as defined in the Clean Water Act (CWA).

In the PR, it is stated that US Supreme Court cases have resulted in opinions and rulings that provide opportunity and necessity to refine the Act.  They also state that clarification under the rule would enhance protection for the nation’s public health and aquatic resources, and increase CWA program predictability and consistency by increasing clarity as to the scope of ‘‘waters of the United States’’ protected under the Act.

DATES: Submit comments on or before July 21, 2014.

COMMENTS: Submit your comments, identified by Docket ID No. EPA–HQ–OW–2011–0880 by one of the following methods:

• Federal eRulemaking Portal:  http://www.regulations.gov
Follow the instructions for submitting comments.

• Email: ow-docket@epa.gov
Include EPA–HQ–OW–2011–0880 in the subject line of the message.

Synopsis (Weeks):

NOTE:  This synopsis is based on interpretations by Christopher Weeks, Regional Aquaculture Extension Specialist, North Central Regional Aquaculture Center (NCRAC) of the EPA Proposal Rule on CWA.  These views do not necessarily represent views by NCRAC and are not intended as legal advice. slot machine game online

I was first notified by this PR on 4/16/14 by Michigan Farm Bureau, which is adamantly opposed (see attached MFB Key Points file).   I have also attached a matrix showing current and proposed language for waters of the US.

The PR posting in the Federal Register is found here:  http://www2.epa.gov/sites/production/files/2014-03/documents/wus_proposed_rule_20140325_prepublication.pdf

It is quite lengthy (88pgs), covers an expansive range of issues, and a difficult read in my view.  Based on the amount of supporting evidence in the PR, it appears that EPA and the Corps have expended considerable effort in obtaining legal and scientific support.  My first impression (and one that sticks), however, is based on the point that Farm Bureau is adamantly opposed, and lists a number of points demonstrating that it reduces the rights of farmers (described mainly for terrestrial farming).  If this is a valid argument, then aquatic farming rights are likely to be negatively impacted as well, potentially to greater extent.

Legal background:

Congress enacted the Federal Water Pollution Control Act Amendments of 1972, Public Law 92–500, 86 Stat. 816, as amended,  (33 U.S.C. 1251 et seq.) (Clean Water Act or CWA) ‘‘to restore and maintain the chemical, physical, and biological integrity of the Nation’s waters.’’

In justification of the current PR, 3 court cases are cited for the purpose of the need by EPA and Corps to improve upon the Act:

  1. United States v. Riverside Bayview Homes, 474 U.S. 121 (1985), which involved wetlands adjacent to a traditional navigable water in Michigan. In a unanimous opinion, the Court deferred to the Corps’ judgment that adjacent wetlands are ‘‘inseparably bound up’’ with the waters to which they are adjacent, and upheld the inclusion of adjacent wetlands in the regulatory definition of ‘‘waters of the United States.’’
  1. Solid Waste Agency of Northern Cook County v. U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, 531 U.S. 159 (2001). In SWANCC, the Court (in a 5–4 opinion) held that the use of ‘‘isolated’’ nonnavigable intrastate ponds by migratory birds was not by itself a sufficient basis for the exercise of Federal regulatory authority under the CWA.
  1. Rapanos v. United States, 547 U.S. 715 (2006). Rapanos involved two consolidated cases in which the CWA had been applied to wetlands adjacent to nonnavigable tributaries of traditional navigable waters. All Members of the Court agreed that the term ‘‘waters of the United States’’ encompasses some waters that are not navigable in the traditional sense. A four-Justice plurality in Rapanos interpreted the term ‘‘waters of the United States’’ as covering ‘‘relatively permanent, standing or continuously flowing bodies of water. . .’’ id. at 739, that are connected to traditional navigable waters, id. at 742, as well as wetlands with a continuous surface connection to such relatively permanent water bodies, id. The Rapanos plurality noted that its reference to ‘‘relatively permanent’’ waters did ‘‘not necessarily exclude streams, rivers, or lakes that might dry up in extraordinary circumstances, such as drought,’’ or ‘‘seasonal rivers, which contain continuous flow during some months of the year but no flow during dry months. . . .’’ Id. at 732 n.5 (emphasis in original). Justice Kennedy’s concurring opinion took a different approach than the plurality’s. Justice Kennedy concluded that the term ‘‘waters of the United States’’ encompasses wetlands that ‘‘possess a ‘significant nexus’ to waters that are or were navigable in fact or that could reasonably be so made.’’

Opponents arguments:
Michigan Farm Bureau’s opposition is mirrored extensively by other agricultural and mineral mining right supporters.    Several articles opposing the PR can be found on the Wisconsin Aquaculture Website:

Proponents views:can be found on the following sites:



Action recommended

If you have strong opinions either way this is undoubtedly a very important piece of legislation for comments.    Also, I should point out that many individuals feel regulations are one of the biggest obstacles impeding major expansion of US aquaculture.  To that end, the aquaculture community must make collective efforts to ensure regulations are fair and effective.  Comments can be made according to directions above (and in the PR).  Letters to Congress are also highly encouraged.   See: https://www.govtrack.us/congress/members  for Congress contact information for your state.

Clarifications to this synopsis are welcome and encouraged!


Chris Weeks, PhD
Michigan State University
Aquaculture Extension Specialist, North Central Region
517-353-2298 / weekschr@msu.edu
Websites:   NCRAC,   Regulations
Aquaculture Information:  NCR Fish Culture List Serve
—-  Advocate for Sustainable Aquaculture Practices ———

Additional files:

MFB Key points for WOTUS

proposed change matrix