Aquaculture: An insight into the fastest growing food production sector

The Aquaculture session at the upcoming BSAS 2019 Conference will be a comprehensive look at recent developments in this rapidly growing sector.
Taking place at 1:30pm on Wednesday 10th April, the session will be chaired by Professor Simon Davies, Chair in Fish Nutrition and Aquaculture at Harper Adams University and an international expert in the field of cultured fish nutrition. 
We spoke to Professor Davies to discover what the Aquaculture session will offer attendees.
Could you tell us a bit about your own background – who you work for and what you do?
“I have been an academic for over 33 years and hold a Professorial Chair in Fish Nutrition. I am a Fellow of the Royal Society of Biology (FRSB) and Editor in Chief of the Trade Journal International Aquafeed. I am an honorary Professor at Nottingham and also University of Los Lagos, Chile. 
“I currently work at Harper Adams University and was at Plymouth University for 29 years with specialisation in Fish Nutrition, Feed technology. I have been supervisor of 35 students as Director of Study and presented numerous key note addresses at international conferences in China, Mexico, Chile and Thailand, as well as several occasions in the USA.
“I have held more than £4.6 Million in grants over the last 30 years. My work has led to some 170 papers as well as several book chapters and reports for government agencies and stakeholders globally.”

What will this session focus on and what does it hope to address?
“It will focus on emerging areas of aquaculture, concentrating on health, feeds and applied biosciences relating to fish farming. There will be a session on fish immunology as well as functional feed additives.”

Who will be speaking at the session and what will they be talking about?
“A mixture of senior academics from various universities as well as postgraduate students engaged in aquatic biosciences.”
What will audiences learn from attending this session?
“They will be able to appreciate the importance of aquaculture within the community of other animal production systems and be able to see the similarities and differences. They will learn that aquaculture is a major global food sector.”

Who stands to benefit from attending this session?
“Many stakeholders engaged in the allied industries, feed and health companies as well as active researchers. More junior Masters and PhD level researchers will benefit from the knowledge exchange and interaction. 
“This session will give aquaculture more prominence within BSAS as a mature sector that supplies more than 50% of our seafood production and is recognised as the fastest growing area of the agri-food business sector today.”    

How can ideas talked about in the session be utilised in the agriculture and animal science sectors?
“The cross-over and the multi-disciplinary nature of the topics such as immunology, nutrition and genetics are all very relevant and appropriate for those working across the spectrum of activities in all the animal sciences including domestic production animals (e.g. poultry, pigs) as well as companion animals within the mono-gastric context. 
“The role of the gut microbiome and interactions with the immune system in fish would provide effective models that can relate to other species and this is also the case with feed formulations and use of alternative ingredients in aquafeeds. The techniques are often common in their application and would enhance our understanding of developments on a wider level to provide information for other species.”
To register for tickets and to find out more about the programme of speakers planned for the BSAS 2019 Conference, click here.