Sustainable Seafood and Nutrition Security (SSNS) is a curriculum development project co-funded by EU Erasmus+Programme to address the issue of sustainability of seafood production, supply and consumption through need-based higher education, and vocational training. The project is for 36 months starting from mid-October 2017. Due to COVID-19, it was extended to mid-October 2021. It aims to build capacity of Higher Education Institutions (HEI) and strengthen linkages among institutions and individuals. Project activities include inception workshop, identification of needs and gap analysis in existing aquaculture / fisheries curricula and development of new curricula for SSNS program. It also includes accreditation of curricula. Project outcomes and achievements will be disseminated organizing a symposium and made available online.
Seafood is the most nutritious and the largest source of animal protein in the world. Its value and contribution of seafood has been increasingly realized. Global consumption and its trade is rising dramatically due to increased population, income and changing food habits from red meat to white meat and seafood. It is also highly traded food. Currently more than half of all seafood is traded from developing to developed countries. The EU is the largest single regional importer. Farmed seafood contributes nearly half of global seafood consumed. Rapid growth and intensification of some of these systems are causes of serious sustainability concerns. Current EU policy supports international trade between Asia and Europe concentrating on food security as well as safety. However, market-forces drive development of standards and labels that identify social and environmental parameters. Seafood comes from either farming or fishing. Products have to be sufficient, safe and nutritious but it also has to be socially acceptable, economically profitable and environmentally sustainable. Maintaining its continuous production from both aquaculture and fisheries for seafood and nutrition security has been a complex issue of global significance and a real challenge.
The Asia-Pacific region
The region continues to be the world’s largest producer and supplier of seafood. The capture production of the Asia-Pacific region exceeded 50% of world production since 2006. In most countries, capture fishery is either declining or remaining constant. At the same time, recently aquaculture too has suffered a lot due to diseases e.g. shrimp farming. Vietnam produces nearly one million mt/year of Pangasius catfish and supplies white fillet (popularly known as Basa, dory etc.) all over the world. Farmers use excessively high density, and intensive farming method. Indonesia is now in a race to compete with Thailand and Vietnam for aquaculture. Aquaculture is growing rapidly as it has been highly emphasized recently. Fast growing industry has highest environmental damages, and high risk of collapse. Therefore, growth needs to optimize to ensure sustainability. Despite the prominence of fisheries, there is a lack of appropriate master’s degree programmes and the suitable courses especially focusing on Fisheries and Aquaculture for Food and Nutrition Security addressing the emerging problems of the real world, which the project aims to fill.
The goal is to contribute to sustainable seafood and nutrition security through improving the quality of higher education and building the capacity of institutions and individuals.
Capacity building of higher education institutions (HEI) and individuals/professionals
Establish Sustainable Seafood Centers (SSC)
Develop MSc curricula & training courses
Develop internship programs and incorporate in the curricula
Strengthen collaborations and linkages among institutions and individuals