THE FARMING PRACTICES AND ECONOMICS OF AQUACULTURE IN THAILAND uri icon

abstract

  • The paper reviews freshwater and coastal aquaculture practices in Thailand, and compares the productivity, costs, and benefits across various types of cultivation and various intensities of production. The paper is based on data that were collected in surveys conducted during 1998-2001 by the Department of Fisheries (DOF), Thailand and the WorldFish Center. More than 22% of Thailand's fish supply comes from aquaculture, with coastal aquaculture accounting for more than 88% of this in terms of value. Intensive culture of shrimp is the dominant form of coastal aquaculture, occupying 69% of the area under production. However, in some regions, the average net profit/kg of intensive shrimp culture is negative, and semi-intensive farming, with relatively lower fixed investment and operating costs, delivers the highest rate of return on investment. On the coast, grouper and sea bass are the most important cage-cultivated species, achieving an economic rate of return as high as 92%. In the same environment, culture of mollusks, such as green mussels, oysters, and blood cockles, is widespread. It can also be economically sustainable, with relatively low capital and operating costs. Although the relative share of freshwater aquaculture production is declining, the level of output has been increasing rapidly. While the average production from monoculture of carnivorous species is higher than that from polyculture, the average capital investment and operating costs associated with the former are also higher. The expansion of freshwater polyculture and of mollusk culture in coastal areas would greatly assist poor fish farmers

publication date

  • 2005
  • 2005