This post is part of KQED’s Do Now U project. Do Now U is a biweekly activity for students and the public to engage and respond to current issues using social media. Do Now U aims to build civic engagement and digital literacy for learners of all ages. This post was written by Ben Lokken, Anna Herff, Tim Jenkins and Sara Wolf, students in Juk Bhattacharyya’s “Environmental Geology” class at University of Wisconsin-Whitewater.

Featured Media Resource
VIDEO: NOAA

Fish on a Farm
Get a brief introduction to fish farming, including some environmental concerns and how scientists are helping to address those impacts.


Do Now U

Do the benefits of aquaculture and fish farming outweigh the negative impacts? #DoNowUFishFarm


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To respond to the Do Now U, you can comment below or post your response on Twitter. Just be sure to include #DoNowUFishFarm and @KQEDedspace in your posts.


Learn More About Aquaculture

Aquaculture in western Greece.
Aquaculture in western Greece. (AlMare)

Aquaculture has emerged a popular and efficient way to grow and rear marine and aquatic life for consumption. Various species of fish, shellfish and even plants are grown in tanks, ponds, man-made inland systems or open water cages in the ocean until they reach market size. On a large scale, aquaculture could lessen the need for finding and catching wild fish for food or ornamental purposes (i.e. aquariums) and also help us more efficiently harvest underwater plants for uses in pharmaceuticals, nutritional supplements and other products. Aquaculture has grown exponentially in recent years. For example, according to the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations, 44.1 percent of total fish production worldwide in 2014 came from aquaculture, an increase from 42.1 percent in 2012 and 31.1 percent in 2004. Aquaculture shows tremendous promise in being a long-term source of food to sustain a growing population. However, it has its fair share of problems.

Aquaculture ponds along the coast of China’s Bohai Sea.
Aquaculture ponds along the coast of China’s Bohai Sea. (Planet Labs)

There are many reasons why aquaculture is good for the environment. In 2009, the total seafood consumed in the world was more than117 million tons. Of this, 90 million tons were taken out of freshwater and marine habitats. This practice can lead to overfishing, which happens when more fish are caught than can be replenished naturally. This can cause certain fish species, like Atlantic bluefish tuna, to become extinct. Overfishing can impact marine ecosystems as well. For example, cod feed on herring. If herring are overfished, the cod population is adversely affected. Upsetting links on the food chain has consequences up and down the line. Aquaculture could help decrease the effects of human consumption of fish on freshwater and marine water habitats by producing food without taking away from overfished environments. Fish, plants and shellfish produced in aquaculture farms are also used to rebuild species populations in freshwater and saltwater habitats. A lesser-known benefit is that plants grown in aquaculture provide material used in pharmaceutical, nutritional, and biotechnology products. Aquaculture can also potentially be used for treating sewage and wastewater. For example, in India, treated sewage is first passed through ponds of duckweed and next through ponds of prawns and carp. These animals gain nutrients from the waste as they clean the water. The water can then be used for agricultural purposes. These are just some of the ways aquaculture is beneficial not only to habitats and wild fish, but also to humans.

Along with the positive aspects of aquaculture come some negative ones. Fish farms can impact wild fish populations by transferring disease and parasites to migrating fish. Aquaculture can also pollute water systems with excess nutrients and fecal matter due to the large numbers and concentrations of farmed fish. Sometimes equipment used in aquaculture can be problematic. For example, in the Puget Sound, geoduck clam farming has affected the coastal ecosystem—the amount of PVC piping and netting has changed the landscape for marine life, although the farmed geoducks, themselves, did not have a negative effect. Also, raising farmed fish can cost a lot in resources. For example, many species of fish raised by aquaculture, such as salmon, are predatory fish. They are fed pellets made from other fish like anchovies or sardines. So, wild fish are being caught to feed farmed fish. In some places, the practice of trawling the bottom of the ocean for marine life in order to make fishmeal scrapes the sea floor, thus harming the sensitive ecosystem. The increased amount of pollutants in fishmeal, caused by toxins from ocean pollution, is also raising concerns because these harmful toxins make their way into food targeted for human consumption.

There are some great benefits to fish farming, but before continuing on, we must be aware of the potential harmful effects it could have on us as consumers as well as the environment. What do you think? Is aquaculture a good alternative to wild harvesting of fish and shellfish?


More Resources

Website: Bren School of Environmental Science & Management, University of California, Santa Barbara
About Aquaculture
Learn about key aquaculture species, the cost and benefits of aquaculture, and community and industrial aquaculture practices.

Website: Monterey Bay Aquarium
Aquaculture
Read about some of the effects of aquaculture, including pollution and disease, how fish that escape pens affect wild populations, and potential damage to habitats.

Video: VOA
Scientists See Aquaculture in America’s Future
Hear why the U.S. is behind other countries in aquaculture even though demand for seafood is growing.


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Do the Benefits of Aquaculture Outweigh Its Negative Impacts? 14 July,2017SENCER

  • Justis Haruo Kusumoto

    Do the benefits of aquaculture and fish farming outweigh the negative impacts? #DoNowUFishFarm

    Generally, the benefits of aquaculture and fish farming appear to outweigh the negative impacts, though this can vary from farm to farm. Much like agriculture on land, aquaculture poses similar risks and issues. The massive population densities of fish in certain habitats can lead to excessive amounts of fecal matter from fish and nutrients being deposited into aquatic ecosystems, which can damage natural habitats. However, many farms use sustainable techniques that minimize these risks, and the benefits to aquaculture are much more pronounced. As the KQED article points out, aquaculture has been used to absorb pollution from sewage treatment runoff, and stops overfishing, which are some of the largest issues in water-based ecosystems. So, considering the magnitude of the benefits of aquaculture and fish farming over its negative impacts, it would generally appear that aquaculture is more beneficial. https://www.seafoodwatch.org/ocean-issues/aquaculture also outlines how sustainable aquaculture and fishing practices can and have on a substantial scale mitigated any negative impacts they might have on the environment.

  • Mai Hagihara

    I suprised the fact that “44.1 percent of total fish production worldwide in 2014 came from aquaculture, an increase from 42.1 percent in 2012 and 31.1 percent in 2004.” The aquaculture is the big way to get the fish production nowadays. There are many positive impacts of the aquaculture, for example to get many fishes toghther at once. On the other hand, the aquaculture has possible of the marine pollution. The marine pollution is one of the big issue that people should solve for the future. However, I think people will not stop the aquaculture to the future even if they realized the negative impact.

    • Nadine Salas

      I also agree! I understand the negative impacts associated with aqua farming such as the marine pollution and spread of disease. However I believe that the demand is far to strong and holds to many incentives to cease production. I think our efforts should be focused on how we can create a more sustainable aquaculture environment , more than whether or not one should be in effect. With such high consumer demand and limited wild fish supply I don’t see a future without some form of aquaculture. #MyCmstArgs

  • Amanda Murphy

    Do the benefits of Aquaculture outweigh its negative impacts? Possibly. #DoNowUFishFarm

    This question is about as unfair as asking if the benefits of farming outweigh the negative impacts.

    Just like land-based food production, the answer is the same- possibly. For example there is conventional farming (pesticides, insecticides, herbicides, fungicides, etc), vs organic. Monoculture vs Permaculture. Factory farming vs free range. Genetically Modified vs non-hybrid. Invasive vs native species. The examples are endless. There are good techniques and there are bad techniques, simple as that.

    What we really should be asking is- What is it that makes one technique more beneficial than the other- Profit or Quality? When we begin to seek the answers to these kinds of questions, we can make better decisions about how our food should be produced.

  • Yo Inoue

    Even though fish farm can impact wild fish population by transferring disease and parasites to migrating fishes, I think we need aquaculture for growing our foods. Since world population has been dramatically increasing, we will not be able to afford enough food for our descendants in the near future. Therefore, the benefits of aquaculture and fish farming outweigh its negative impacts.

  • Ryoko Yamamoto

    It is true that fishery products are decreasing as the artificiality increases as consumption rate increases year by year.
    Fishery resources are limited.  There are many fish that are already extinct by the overfishing, even now. Therefore, I think that producing aquatic products by aquaculture is important in securing food resources. Climate change that changes the ecosystem itself of fish. And if people can solve the problem of fishery resource management which affects the number of fish, I think that aquaculture is a good way to change to wild harvest.

  • Shohei Ueda

    I didn’t know that aquaculture is this much widespread in the world. About 50% of total fish production in 2014 was from aquaculture. It means most of the fishes that we eat every day is not from freshwater. Many people say fishes from freshwater taste much better than from aquaculture, and the aquaculture has a negative impact which transfers disease and parasites to migrating fishes. Even though the aquaculture has negative issues, people will continue to produce by the aquaculture because some of the fishes are too expensive to eat, but it can make cheaper for everyone.

  • Jonny Ballesteros

    I can see the concerns for those who think aquaculture can have many negative things for our environment and the certain type of fish. Even though aquaculture does have some negatives, the positives the outweigh the negatives. Having this is beneficial for us since we are now focusing on the future and growth of it. By doing this we are now providing a healthy, well farmed fish for the person that is buying it. Also, like stated in the video, they are already working on alternative ways to fix the negatives that come from aquaculture. I would support this since it has many benefits for us. #DoNowUFishFarm

    • Ciana Bell

      I agree Jonny. Focusing on the growth of consumption of seafood and the growth of our population is crucial. While there are some negative impacts that come with aquaculture, I feel that the benefits do outweigh them. I do think that aquaculture needs to be regulated and it needs to continuously be updated and monitored. If continued research is put into aquaculture than I feel that it will continue to be a beneficial aspect to our people. #DoNowUFishFarm #MyCMSTArgs

  • Ciana Bell

    Until reading this, I was completely unaware that aquaculture was even a thing. However, after reading I do feel that the benefits of aquaculture and fish farming can outweigh the negative impacts. I see where people are concerned, for any type of process like this whether it be agriculture or aquaculture, it is going to create some negative impacts on our environment. However, if there is proper regulation then the negative impacts can be lessened. Overall, I think with proper regulation and continued research on the matter, the negatives that many worry about can become less of a worry. This website provides more information and a list of pros and cons of aquaculture. http://healthresearchfunding.org/pros-cons-fish-farming/ #DoNowUFishFarm #MyCMSTArgs

  • Manami Tokumoto

    Aquaculture is such a common thing today that is done in many different places. Finding out the negative aspects such as, fish farms can impact wild fish population by disease and parasites, and polluting water systems were surprising. I believe aquaculture started for being beneficial for both human and wild fish but there are negative aspects at the same time. I personally support aquaculture because it plays a big roll in providing food for us these days. Finding a way to not harm the environment and us humans will be the next step. I would also like to learn about what we can do as individual to help solve this problem.

  • kimberly

    It amazes me that with all of our famous ports and fishing companies that the United States i so behind the rest of the world in aquaculture. Turns out were the most behind in a lot of things.

  • august

    I’ve never think about aquaculture negative affect to the ecosystem. People love fishes, aquaculture is one of the good solution to get fishes easier. People knows we will eat fishes, so they might not feed bad things. If people stop aquaculture, then we need to think about over fishing.

  • Kai Kojimoto

    I thought the list of pros and cons was really helpful in explaining aquaculture to me. I have heard that there are fish farming by the shores but I was unaware that these farms could be used to cultivate plants that can be used in pharmaceutical, nutritional, and biotechnology products. It seems that ultimately the effects of the press outweigh the cons. the only thing i wonder about is that if fish farms are supposed to decrease the catch rate of ocean fish, I wonder if having to feed the fish in the fish farms would still decrease the ocean catch rates?

    • Gavin Henson

      The list of Pros and Cons was really helpful for me as well. They did mention that they are looking into alternatives for feeding the fish in the fish farms, which would be a could topic to research. #MyCMSTArgs

  • sarahmak

    I feel that if any type of species are collected in a group that do have enough space be the finest fish, are they best tasting? If the farming is for human consumption, are we paying for quality fish that will be eating. This seems that we will lead to genetically modified fish… If we can modify plants, scientist will soon work into modify fish.

    • Jace Cuneo

      Ay, I didn’t think of that and I think it is a good point. This can definitely be a slippery slope that leads to GMO fish on the reg. One problem I read talked about how if a fish were to escape it could breed with other fish or dominate the food source. But I don’t want any GMO fish breeding with the natural fish, no no no.
      #MyCMSTArgs

  • Tate Kaiama

    This article on aquaculture was very informative and intriguing. It shared the positive and negative effects of aquaculture and ultimately I believe the negative effects are not necessarily worth it. In my opinion, the best thing we can do to ensure the production of fish and sea life animals is by enforcing stricter rules and regulations within societies. We can incorporate more fishing police who ticket those that go against the enforced rules. We can follow professional guidelines that work with the life system and production of fish. Humans can not be selfish when it comes to the extension of any animals life. Humans need to sacrifice some time away from eating certain animals so that they can prosper and regain its whole production system.

    • Tate Kaiama

      In addition to my previous post, I thought you folks might be interested in the certain techniques that Hawaiian people utilized to catch fish. Although there were many techniques, loko i’a (fishponds) was the most effective way and could feed a whole ahupua’a (land division.) Many people might identify these hawaiian fishponds as a gigantic fish trap, however, Hawaiian fishponds needed to follow certain procedures and were a lot bigger in size. In summary, fishponds functioned off of natural phenomenons and unique architecture. The kuapa (wall) that acts as the outline or perimeter of the fishpond is made of pohaku or stones. Throughout this long wall there are makaha (gates) placed at specific locations where currents occurred. According to http://mauifishpond.com/koieie/fishpond-basics/ “By studying nature, Hawaiians understood that fish would gather in areas of current. Going with the ebb and flow of the fishpond’s water, Hawaiians were able to lure fish near the makaha. Small fish were able to enter the small slats of the makaha while larger fish were prevented from escaping. The design is ingenious!” The community did what they could in order to ensure maintenance within the fishpond. If the wall needed to be fixed then they’d find new pohaku. If invasive plants were found within the fishpond then they’d remove it. If predatory fish entered the pond and ate all the other fish then they’d hunt that fish down. (Please note the above info is just a general description… theres more to it.)

      Unfortunately, fishponds and other agricultural sites were abandoned due to western contact, therefore, fishponds all around Hawai’i were overgrown with invasive plants, experienced wall decay and so on and so forth. Today, people in Hawai’i are getting together to restore hawaiian fishponds so that they can function the way they used to. Here is a website managed by Paepae o He’eia Fishponds, this fishpond is found on the windward side of O’ahu and they are doing what they can to restore, and revitalize the fishpond. I have volunteered at this fishpond multiple times and have seen the major changes it has gone through. A lot has been restored, however, there is still a lot more that needs to be done.
      Check it out —> http://paepaeoheeia.org/

      • Aloha○Nature

        Thank you for posting this Tate! Very informative 🙂

  • Jace Cuneo

    When reading this article,I found myself on the fence. Part of me understood the importance these are to meet human consumption without overfishing, but I find it hard to justify all the negatives. According to http://www.talkingfish.org/2012/did-you-know/all-about-aquaculture-environmental-risks-and-benefits the U.S. is already taking measures to prevent the high nutrient and waste levels that can create dead zones by making sure they are located next to strong currents. But then there is the scare about disease that can spread into the aquaculture or out of the aquaculture. What I find most problematic is the demand of energy and cost to maintain efficient aquacultures. They demand tons of fresh water to be pumped through and that takes energy. Fish like salmon eat a lot of food that have to have certain oils and nutrients and that gets expensive. This is something that I feel we could make better, but until then we should put these on hold and strictly regulate the ones that are active
    #MyCMSTArgs #DoNowUFishFarm

    • Trevor Ramsey

      Jace, I appreciate that you are concerned about the costs associated with successful aquaculture. The ability to see the positive and negative result of aquaculture makes choosing a side very difficult. While looking into the problematic issues, think about what issues would still be there without aquaculture? While pest and disease would not be at as high a risk of spreading, overfishing would still be quite problematic.

  • Trevor Ramsey

    Like on any farm, there are going to be risks associated with the size and practices used by farmers to supply the largest yields. Within any species the population is affected by the quality of life present. Depending on the size of the farm compared to the farmed fish population present at any given time, there is a risk of a pests and disease spreading through a population. In an attempt to combat disease, veterinary grade pest control is being placed into the water, thus contaminating it. With these risks in mind, I believe that the benefits of aquaculture outweighs the risks. According to Encyclopedia Britannica: Advocacy for Animals, 70% of the worlds waterways are overfished already. With the risk of extinction for many fish, I believe it is possible to control the aquaculture industry just as the cattle industry has done as well as the farmlands across America. #MyCMSTArgs #DoNowUFishFarm

    • Grace Gerberich

      I agree. It is up to each individual fish farm to manage their population correctly in order to maintain a stable healthy environment for the fish and to prevent disease and pests. Managing these issues with veterinary pest control in the water is a very effective way. #DoNowUFishFarm #MyCMSTArgs

  • Gavin Henson

    As long as the people involved in establishing the fish farms are carefully regulated to minimize damage to the environment, I think that the idea of fish farming is alright. The current popular fishing methods have far greater consequences than presented here, which makes this idea more intriguing. The real drawback is that we would have to rely on the Government to set standards for these fish farms. Considering how the US Government makes decisions about Oil, I’m sure there are many people like myself who would be pretty upset to see the Government maximize the profit for the companies involved. What’s worse is that most of the fish that are farmed come from nations that do not have as strict regulations on fishing, as mentioned in https://www.seafoodwatch.org/ocean-issues/aquaculture. #DoNowUFishFarm @KQEDedspace #MyCMSTArgs

    • Kelsey Bridewell

      I agree. Before this idea can be decided on (before I can make a decision on it), I would like to know how the government will regulate this and what standard/quality of fish will be farmed. Fishing is such a primal instinct, hunting and fishing for food. I would hate to see this industry disappear altogether. #MyCMSTArgs #DoNowUFishFarm

  • Nadine Salas

    From the reading and research I do believe the benefits outweigh the costs especially when the coast are conditionals and have means to avoid them. According to the Monterey Bay aquarium https://www.seafoodwatch.org/ocean-issues/wild-seafood , we have literally exploited our natural fish resources to the point of collapsing and very few areas have the ability to repopulate themselves enough to sustain the demand of consumers. I personally do not see another way to supplement the demand without aquaculture as an option. Our own overarming has lead to near extinction of certain species of fish as well as disruption in their ecosystems. What I found the most attractive as means to limit the negative effects of aquaculture is something mentioned by the Monterey Bay Aquarium. Which is before consuming seafood to ask/reserach if the company is selling sustainable food. This simple measure in filtering our own consumption can help shape the demand for and supply of farmed fish that is caught in responsible ways.#DoNowUFishFarm #MyCmstArgs

  • Obafemi Burris-Albans

    I don’t think that aquaculture benefits or drawbacks outweigh the other because both are large impacts on the earth. On one hand, the health benefits and the economic benefits are solutions to worldwide problems that have been rapidly growing for years. For instance, the overfishing in many developed countries like the United States where many people consume thousands of pounds of fish a year which causes a strain on the ecosystem. On the other hand, the costs of aquaculture are great too because they may increase issues for the general population, not just certain development level countries. For example, if aquaculture is practiced worldwide and the pipes are tainted with the water filled with fecal matter from the groups of fish contained in the gates of the farms.

  • Andrea Azevedo

    I didn’t know a lot about aquaculture before today but after doing a little research I think that the benefits do outweigh the possible negative impacts. Growing in population means a growing need for food and a lot of people want fish. According to the world fish center, fish provides about 1 billion people with MOST of their daily animal protein https://www.plannedparenthood.org/learn/general-health-care. This seems to be a more cost effective way to raise food for our growing population. Not to mention there are a lot of regulations put on the aquacultures such as how far they need to be spaced out so that they don’t end up having negative consequences on the environment. #MyCMSTArgs #DoNowUFishFarm

  • Kelsey Bridewell

    Just because we start farming fish instead of catching them doesn’t necessarily solve our problem of over fishing. If we start using aquaculture, where there are great benefits to this, I believe overfishing will still be a problem as demand will increase for “wild caught fish,” instead of farmed aquaculture fish. Yes it fixes our supply problem for fish and may in the long run help certain ecosystems, but the demand for wild fish will never cease. The benefits don’t quite out weigh the negatives yet. #MyCMSTArgs #DoNowUFishFarm

    • Seryna Valencia

      There is definitely for wild fish in the restaurant and overall food industry. Many owners do not want to admit, or put their name on something they sell that has obvious negative environmental impacts. I think that fish farming has good intentions but realistically its unethical and should be shown the door. It comes down to quantity over quality but it really should be in reverse if we are going to save the plant that provided us with such a healthy animal like a fish.

      #DoNowUFishFarm
      #MyCmstArgs

    • Kyle Robins

      Just by creating fish farms we will not increase demand. Demand for fish could go up if there becomes a shortage of other sources of meat, but for now it is simply not an issue. Fish farming is a great alternative to going out into the ocean and causing certain species to go extinct from over-fishing. #MyCMSTArgs #DoNowUFishFarm

    • Juan Benitez

      Fish farming is a great idea for the time being. I say this because fish farming won’t necessarily increase the demand for fish. Instead, it would make a great and efficient way to get fish. Along with making sure wild fish are okay along the way. #MyCMSTArgs #DoNowUFishFarm

    • Stone Dennison

      According to Nutritionfacts.org’s Michael Gregor, M.D “Fish consumption has been linked to a wide range of conditions including amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS), type 2 diabetes, kidney stones, atrial fibrillation, lower IQs among children, smaller infant brain size, shortened telomeres, which are a sign of aging, lower sperm counts, lower testosterone, more symptoms of depression, anxiety and stress, and earlier puberty.” He also states.. Eating organic or even wild caught fish may not significantly lower industrial pollutant exposure. Analysis of fish oil capsules has revealed toxic contaminants, which may counteract the benefit of the omega-3 fatty acids. So advice to eat oily fish or take fish oil capsules to lower risk of heart disease, stroke or mortality is no longer supported by the balance of available evidence.” all these quotes are backed by scientific studies if you are interested. STOP FISH FARMING! https://nutritionfacts.org/topics/fish/ #myCMSTArgs #DoNowUFishFarm

  • Seryna Valencia

    Unfortunately all things with a reward comes with the risk of a negative factor as well. Some fish farming benefits include: a plentiful amount of food, a secure source of food and according to http://healthresearchfunding.org accessibility to make coastal grounds and lakes a farming ground. Some negative attributes of fish farming include: water contamination, chemical ingestion and environmental impacts. Aquaculture’s negative impacts overwhelmingly out weigh the positive ones. There is way more options of food in this world to eat than there is opportunities to conserve our planet. If this is a practice that is harming the water we drink to wash down the fish we eat, then why are we doing it? It seems like there may be a cost benefit like most things that is preventing the ethical sense of the situation. I think that if there is an opportunity to further my chemical ingestion from a farming process then I should avoid it at all costs. We ingest a lot of chemicals already so I guess we need to pick and choose our battles.
    #DoNowUFishFarm
    #MyCmstArgs

    http://healthresearchfunding.org/pros-cons-fish-farming/

  • Grace Gerberich

    Upon researching I recently discovered that aquaculture is such a common thing today and occurs in many different places. Negative aspects, like fish farms impact the wild fish population through disease, parasites and polluting water systems. I think aquaculture began with the intent of being beneficial for both human and wild fish, but resulted in having negative affects while doing so. I support aquaculture because of statistics like how in 2014 50% of the total fish production was from it. After reading I believe the that the benefits outweigh the negatives. Only if overproduction and the issues that may arise from that become more prevalent, then we should look into making necessary changes in the future. #DoNowUFishFarm #MyCMSTArgs https://www.talkingfish.org/2012/did-you-know/all-about-aquaculture-environmental-risks-and-benefits

  • Kyle Robins

    Fish farming CAN be a good way to sustainable produce more fish due to the rapidly depleting amount of fish that we eat in the ocean. However, in order for fish farming to be safe and good for the environment we need to be sure to check for compliance with strict environmental government regulations. #MyCMSTArgs #DoNowUFishFarm

  • Juan Benitez

    Fish farming would be a great way to release more fish out in to the ocean, to bring back the fish population. The government just needs to regulate it, and make sure that everything is healthy and okay. In order to insure that our environment is not being polluted. #MyCMSTArgs #DoNowUFishFarm

  • Stone Dennison

    Crazy idea. STOP EATING FISH. There is no biological, or physiological need to eat fish. Over-fishing is destroying our oceans, and according to multiple reports by 2048 their will be no fish left. Modern day fish are laced with ocean contaminants like PCB and mercury. Instead of eating fish, we can consume things like flaxseed, chia seeds, hemp seeds, and much more delicious Omega-3 packed foods that can replace the need to eat fish. Please do not claim the Inuit eskimos as they lived to about 50 an 60 years old at most, and they major atherosclerotic build up in their arteries and had dangerously high cholesterol levels as well. To concude, you do not need fish to be healthy. Stop fish farming! #myCMSTArgs #DoNowUFishFarm

    • Justis Haruo Kusumoto

      Your policy stance on aquaculture is not only primitive and extreme, but shows a clear lack of depth and evidence. And you have no sources to back up your claims.
      First, while the body has no “physiological need” for any specific food (other than water, if that counts as a food), protein is critical to body function. While, yes, meats as well as fish contain protein, you omit a major theme: foods contain complete or high quality proteins as well as incomplete/low quality protein. While, you are right to the degree that nuts and seeds contain some protein, unlike fish and meats it’s not HIGH QUALITY protein, as, per the University of Washington https://www.google.com/url?sa=t&rct=j&q=&esrc=s&source=web&cd=3&cad=rja&uact=8&ved=0ahUKEwiv9orx0crTAhUM12MKHeglB7MQFggsMAI&url=https%3A%2F%2Fdepts.washington.edu%2Fpku%2FPDFs2%2FModifyingRecipesFoodList.pdf&usg=AFQjCNFKMGdqjVjlh08xX3fJ8yfENAy2EQ nuts and seeds mostly contain incomplete/low quality protein, which is of little importance compared to high quality/complete proteins, which contain all the essential amino acids.
      PCB and mercury: Refer to the attached Harvard School of Public Health article.http://archive.sph.harvard.edu/press-releases/2006-releases/press10172006.html Some of their fascinating findings: “The study also points out that only 9% of the PCBs and dioxins in the U.S. food supply come from fish and other seafood; more than 90% comes from other foods such as meats, vegetables, and dairy products.” Looks to me like fish have among the lowest PCB levels, especially when compared to land-based foods. Also, per the cholesterol risks, “The evidence across different studies showed that fish consumption lowers the risk of death from heart disease by 36%. The benefit was related to the level of intake of omega-3 fatty acids, and thus benefits are greater for oily fish (e.g. salmon, bluefish), which are higher in beneficial omega-3 fatty acids, than lean fish (haddock, cod).

      “’We also found that fish or fish oil intake reduces total mortality by 17%, a remarkable reduction considering that this is the benefit for deaths from all causes,’ said Mozaffarian.” The only omega-3 rich foods outlined in this publication were fish. I invite you to tell us of alternative sources of omega-3 and healthy fatty acids.

      • Stone Dennison

        ccording to Nutritionfacts.org’s Michael Gregor, M.D “Fish consumption has been linked to a wide range of conditions including amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS), type 2 diabetes, kidney stones, atrial fibrillation, lower IQs among children, smaller infant brain size, shortened telomeres, which are a sign of aging, lower sperm counts, lower testosterone, more symptoms of depression, anxiety and stress, and earlier puberty.” He also states.. Eating organic or even wild caught fish may not significantly lower industrial pollutant exposure. Analysis of fish oil capsules has revealed toxic contaminants, which may counteract the benefit of the omega-3 fatty acids. So advice to eat oily fish or take fish oil capsules to lower risk of heart disease, stroke or mortality is no longer supported by the balance of available evidence.” all these quotes are backed by scientific studies if you are interested. Also you state that protein is an issue, yet I did not touch on the subject of protein, I talked about essential fatty acids that fish have, I gave alternatives. There are plenty of protein options if you do not eat fish. Meat eaters can eat beef, dairy, cheese, eggs. As these foods are high quality and are absorbed by the body well. For those who object to animal products, can consume legumes, nuts, seeds, plant protein powders and those who eat a varied diet can fufill all dietary requirments neccesarry for optimal health. While plant proteins are less quality, protein deficiency is really not a real thing among homo sapiens. During our most rapid rate of growth, we consume the perfect human food: breast milk, the evolutionary perfect food for our species. Breast milk is only 6% protein! Crazy! As we do most of our growth during this period… According to this study on Kwashiorkor https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/m/pubmed/6485050/, “there is no evidence of dietary protein deficency”. In fact, it appears to be in the mammilian world, human breast milk has the lowest concentration of protein of all! According to this study, http://link.springer.com/chapter/10.1007%2F978-1-4419-6733-6_9 “If high-quality protein was the “nutrient among nutrients” underwriting the astounding encephalization that we see in our Plio-Pleistocene ancestors, one would expect that importance to be resoundingly reflected in the composition of human breast milk. This is patently not the case, however (Robson 2004; Sellen 2007). In fact, human breast milk is one the lowest-protein milks in the mammalian world, right along with the milks of the great apes and many other primates” I would highly recomend you understand by phsyiological or biological I mean, protein is not a concern for our species. Protein is put on a pedastool by the meat, dairy and egg industry. Our dietary requirments are shaped by lobbyists and powerful indsutry executives. #myCMSTArgs #DoNowUFishFarm

      • Stone Dennison

        Fish obtain their heavy concentration of fatty acids from the algae which they consume. This is where they get their DHA, and EPA content. Plant sources of Omega 3 fatty acids come in the from of ALA, and these EFA convert to DHA at a rate of 10%. Two plant-based sources sources of omega-3 are flax seeds and algae-based DHA supplements, which are bioequivalent to fish oil but do not have the harmful industrial toxins. Skip right to the main source! And do not suffer the possible health consequences of consuming fish. According to this study https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC2989356/, “Flaxseed is an alternative to marine products. It is one of the richest sources of the plant-based ω-3 fatty acid, alpha-linolenic acid (ALA). Based on the results of clinical trials, epidemiological investigations and experimental studies, ingestion of ALA has been suggested to have a positive impact on CVD. Because of its high ALA content, the use of flaxseed has been advocated to combat CVD” Also, there is no evidence that it is neccesary to consume the amount of DHA recomended from the government. It is just an arbitrary number set by the U.S government.

      • Stone Dennison

        ccording to Nutritionfacts.org’s Michael Gregor, M.D “Fish consumption has been linked to a wide range of conditions including amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS), type 2 diabetes, kidney stones, atrial fibrillation, lower IQs among children, smaller infant brain size, shortened telomeres, which are a sign of aging, lower sperm counts, lower testosterone, more symptoms of depression, anxiety and stress, and earlier puberty.” He also states.. Eating organic or even wild caught fish may not significantly lower industrial pollutant exposure. Analysis of fish oil capsules has revealed toxic contaminants, which may counteract the benefit of the omega-3 fatty acids. So advice to eat oily fish or take fish oil capsules to lower risk of heart disease, stroke or mortality is no longer supported by the balance of available evidence.” all these quotes are backed by scientific studies if you are interested. Also you state that protein is an issue, yet I did not touch on the subject of protein, I talked about essential fatty acids that fish have, I gave alternatives. There are plenty of protein options if you do not eat fish. Meat eaters can eat beef, dairy, cheese, eggs. As these foods are high quality and are absorbed by the body well. For those who object to animal products, can consume legumes, nuts, seeds, plant protein powders and those who eat a varied diet can fufill all dietary requirments neccesarry for optimal health. While plant proteins are less quality, protein deficiency is really not a real thing among homo sapiens. During our most rapid rate of growth, we consume the perfect human food: breast milk, the evolutionary perfect food for our species. Breast milk is only 6% protein! Crazy! As we do most of our growth during this period… According to this study on Kwashiorkor https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.go…, “there is no evidence of dietary protein deficency”. In fact, it appears to be in the mammilian world, human breast milk has the lowest concentration of protein of all! According to this study, http://link.springer.com/ch… “If high-quality protein was the “nutrient among nutrients” underwriting the astounding encephalization that we see in our Plio-Pleistocene ancestors, one would expect that importance to be resoundingly reflected in the composition of human breast milk. This is patently not the case, however (Robson 2004; Sellen 2007). In fact, human breast milk is one the lowest-protein milks in the mammalian world, right along with the milks of the great apes and many other primates” I would highly recomend you understand by phsyiological or biological I mean, protein is not a concern for our species. Protein is put on a pedastool by the meat, dairy and egg industry. Our dietary requirments are shaped by lobbyists and powerful indsutry executives. #myCMSTArgs #DoNowUFishFarm

      • Nanci Contreras

        I think we should be focusing on the impacts aquaculture has on the environment and species diversity rather than arguing over which dietary choice is the better choice. #MyCMSTArgs #DoNowUFishFarm

    • Jess Elm 🐙

      I really like all the information that you included to make your argument. I agree fish is not a priority to our living, so why go through all this struggle and harm the environment to accomplish this? Also the chance of causing animals to become extinct for a meal seems pretty barbaric. These aquacultures even changed the environment in Brazil so much so they had to be shut down. Why would we continue to do something like this? #MyCMSTArgs http://www.peta.org/about-peta/faq/is-aquaculture-bad-for-the-environment/

  • Nanci Contreras

    Whether you believe aquaculture is good or bad depends on what your view is on the pros and cons of it all. Personally, if the practice leads to environmental impacts that are irreversible and has a negative impact on species so much so that there is a fear or risk of extinction, there is no reason to continue the practice. If fishing laws were more heavily regulated, over fishing wouldn’t be a concern. #MyCMSTArgs #DoNowUFishFarm

    • Tori Mancuso

      I think that it’s quite difficult to monitor fishing regulations as there are already numerous regulations put in place and that doesn’t seem to stop poachers. I believe that aquaculture can be beneficial as it aids in the reversal of a species becoming extinct and limits overfishing. Many of the problems aquaculture may cause can be prevented if we invest the money in the right direction. It also allows us to research the species being grown. #MyCMSTArgs #DoNowUFishFarm

  • Tori Mancuso

    Personally, I believe the benefits outweigh the negatives. It seems as though many of the problems are matters that can be improved over time. If we are able to study the fish being grown, we can devise ways to improve their health so that they no longer release harmful parasites and diseases to passing fish. Through trial and error and tests performed on land, we can ensure that the equipment will no longer be faulty but more efficient. We can spread out the farms or limit how many fish may be farmed in one area in order to eliminate excess nutrients and fecal matter; this is also a matter that could be regulated with rules set in place. In the end, the amount of fish being caught to be fed vs the fish that will come from the farmer is quite drastic. It’s more beneficial to grow fish with our own resources than to allow overfishing to occur and potentially wipe out a species. The biggest downfall would be the amount of time and money would be costly in order to run a successful farm that wouldn’t harm the environment, which should be our biggest concern. #DoNowUFishFarm #MyCMSTArgs
    http://www.nmfs.noaa.gov/sfa/reg_svcs/Council%20stuff/council%20orientation/2007/2007TrainingCD/TabY-Aquaculture/02_AquacultureSuccessStories_June%202007.pdf

    • Keely Baccus

      I agree that the benefits do in fact outweigh the negatives. There is still a long and expensive road ahead to ensure that fish farming is both safe and effective. I personally believe that it is worth the time and money if we can preserve over fished species of fish and avoid extinction. #DoNowUFishFarm #MyCMSTArgs

  • Keely Baccus

    While there are negative effects of fish farming I feel like they are nothing compared to the benefits. The negatives are all things that could be fixed. Pollution is minimized if the farms are spaced out so we can put in a regulation requiring that farms need to stay a certain distance away from one another. Until we find a better pellet to use to feed the fish we can require that if you farm a fish that eats others than you must also farm it’s food. We are running the world out of it’s resources. Over fishing is a big problem. I would rather spend time and money perfecting fish farming than have fish go extinct due to over fishing. #DoNowUFishFarm #MyCMSTArgs

  • Jess Elm 🐙

    I don’t think the benefits of aquaculture out way the negative impacts. The defense for aquaculture is that it helps from overfishing and helps potential extinction. However, this could be avoided if they just don’t overfish. The aquaculture is a good idea in theory except for the terrible sideeffects. Pesticides, chemicals, and waste kill the same fish that they are claiming to protect. The waste produced by some British Columian salmon farms is equal to a city of 50,000 people. We’re effecting the culture these animals are used to with the construction of these “farms”. It also seems counterproductive to capture wild fish to feed a small portion of the farmed fish. http://www.peta.org/about-peta/faq/is-aquaculture-bad-for-the-environment/ #MyCMSTArgs #DoNowUFishFarm

    • j tech46

      I think that the farms just need to be better regulated. I’m sure that there’s a way to keep the waste out of the environment. Besides, the farms probably wouldn’t be as damaging if they were made smaller.
      #MyCMSTArgs #DoNowUFishFarm

  • j tech46

    I don’t see any issue with keeping up a few of these farms, in order to not over-fish certain species. They need to be regulated though. The fish shouldn’t be left sitting in their own waste. The farms shouldn’t disrupt the surrounding environment either. Otherwise, I think it’s a good idea. Having the fish in a confined area would also be helpful in order to vet the fish for parasites or pathogens.

    http://www.fao.org/aquaculture/en/

    #MyCMSTArgs #DoNowUFishFarm

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