Simple Technological Innovation Raises Productivity In The Shrimp Farming Industry

Sometimes by re-configuring dumb technology, a simple innovative solution could be attained that produces better results. The space needed to farm shrimp has been a constraint in the aquaculture industry for some time. Due to intense regulations concerning environmental factors, the most effective method to grow shrimp inland was in tubs operated with a flow systems. This system allows for the re-circulation of the limited water supply available and minimizes any effluent seepage, or soil contamination. The production capacity of the farm was limited to the space available because the tubs could only produce a limited amount of shrimp and thus made it cost prohibitive for American farmers to operate at a profitable level. This made importing shrimp a cheaper alternative and placed American farmers in a competitive disadvantage in the international market. In a NY Time article Dr. Addison L. Lawrence has figured out a simple solution to obtaining higher yields by re-configuring the same technology that was already available. Dr. Lawrence increased the volume of production by stacking the water tubs on top of each other and thus maximizing the use of the available space. This simple solution benefits all the industry’s stakeholders (American consumers, American farmers and the environment), by increasing the production level, lowering market prices and maintaining proper environmental stewardship.

Octavio Franco

To: JMB2408

I think that this water metering technology is a simple but innovative solution for better individual water management. The only drawback would be user incentive for those consumers in regions that are not currently affected by water stress. Those users tend to reside in more economically developed or affluent regions that could afford to buy the technology but are not motivated to do so due to plentiful clean water. On the other hand those that do need the technology are in less economically developed areas that can not afford the devices. In those situations I think that it would help the government by investing in the technology.



Better Option For Our Oceans With Biodegradable Plastic?

Plastic debris from bottles and other packaging isn’t the only source of pollution we face when it comes to maintaining our oceans healthy and free from plastics. The threat from plastic fibers in our clothing is just as detrimental to our oceans. Biodegradable plastics are already being used in the market for bottle manufacturing and other packaging needs. But the challenge to develop a biodegradable plastic fiber that is durable enough to use in manufacturing clothing has evaded scientist. In a Seeker article by Molly Fosco , Yiqi Yang a biological systems engineering professor from the University of Nebraska believes that he may have found to the solution. Prof. Yang has redeveloped the manufacturing process to make a more durable biodegrable fiber and has teamed up with Cargil to manufacture and develop this fiber. The collaboration effort though Natureworks will help to drastically reduce the amount of non-biodegradable plastic waste that is being dumped in our oceans and in turn affecting our food chain.

Octavio Franco

#oaf2118 / Fall 2017 – Week 3

Reply to Brian Balzar:

Hi Brian-

I have been interested in hydorponics for some time also since I first read about Dr. Marting Schreibman’s ( work at CUNY’s Brooklyn College. His work merges both aquaculture and hydroponics for a more sustainable process. The advancement in these technologies are vital to the food, water and energy nexus for the progression towards a sustainable process across all industries. If you ever get a chance I would enjoy talking to you about your experience in the field. Thanks.

Octavio Franco
#oaf2118 / Fall 2017 – Week 3

Promising Feed for Farm Raised Tuna

According to a Pew Trust industry report the global tuna industry  is valued in the billions of dollars annually. They reported that in 2014 alone the yearly take was $42.21B, slightly higher than the 2012 take of $41.63B. With the increase in demand for the species, global fish stocks have decreased and are in danger of being depleted towards extinction. In order to keep this from happening the Japanese mariculture industry has been trying to produce enough farm raised Blue Fin Tuna to meet the growing consumer demand for the product.

Total Value of 7 Most Commercially Important Tuna Species

The challenge in achieving their goal lies in increasing the mortality rate of the farmed tuna until they’re able to be harvested. The fish feeds that are currently available in the market cannot replicate the Tuna fish’s natural diet, therefore the Tuna are unable to reach maturity and die before harvesting.

A Nikkei Asian Review article reports that the Japanese company Feed One has developed a feed that could sufficiently raise the mortality level of the farmed raised Tuna towards maturity and subsequent harvesting.

The Yokohama based company has labeled the feed Ambrosia and has implemented the feed into production in a joint effort with a Sukumo based farm. Although only one other company has achieved a compete farming cycle with their Tuna, Feed One hopes to complete one also by November and market their Tuna under the brand name Tunagu.

by Octavio Franco

oaf2118 / Fall 2017 – Week 2

Cleaning Our Oceans

Ocean Cleanup Project

  1. Sustainability Problems Addressed: Water, Waste and Health
  2. Summary: A) The oceans are being littered with tons of plastic debris, with the Pacific garbage patch alone containing an estimated 5 million pieces of micro-plastic pieces, B) This affects our food chain as fish eat these micro plastic and we subsequently consume the same debris C) A student has developed a technology to capture 50% of the debris within the next five years D) The name of the project is named The Ocean Cleanup and found at
  3. State fisheries managers and environmental organizations
  4. The technology has just been deployed after a challenging start from the beginning of the year. The project has been heavily funded by silicon valley.


By Octavio Franco

oaf2118 / Fall 2017 – Week 2