Inland aquaculture in India : past trend, present status and future prospects uri icon


  • In India, inland aquaculture has emerged as a fast-growing enterprise and a viable alternative to the declining capture fisheries. The present paper is an attempt to assess Indian inland aquaculture with respect to its resource base, output trends, systems and activities, yield gaps, adoption and impact on aquaculturists, economics, returns to inputs, investment needs, and future prospects. The paper is largely based on existing literature and observations made as part of an ICAR-WorldFish demand supply project. Indian aquaculture is primarily limited to inland sector and carp-oriented; for that reason, this activity received special attention. Freshwater aquaculture observed tremendous growth in the past 15 years, but immense scope still exists for horizontal expansion and increases in productivity (vertical expansion). This is evidenced by the fact that the average farm fish yield is only one-third of that achieved in farm trials. The difference was mainly due to much higher input use in on-farm trials. Most of the aquaculturists were practicing extensive aquaculture, but aquaculturists with semi-intensive operations benefited most from adoption of technology. The benefit:cost ratios for different systems of aquaculture varied between 1.22 to 1.86. The return to capital was much higher than the return to labor, due to the low labor input. The semi-intensive aquaculture system would receive the greatest return from projected macrolevel investments, followed by extensive and intensive systems. Dedicated efforts are needed to meet the demand for quality fish seed and feed in order to achieve the desired 45% increase in area and greater than 50% increase in productivity. Based on the observations, activities designed to foster inland aquacultural development in India are recommended

publication date

  • 2007