Title: Aquaculture Development and the Impact on Food Supply, Nutrition, and Health in Ghana and Tanzania

Theme: Improved Human Health and Nutrition, Food Quality, and Food Safety

Lead US University: Purdue University

Lead Host Country University: Kwame Nkrumah University of Science & Technology (KNUST)

Partner Institutions:

  • USA: Virginia Polytechnic Institute & State University, University of Arkansas at Pine Bluff, University of Hawaii - Hilo
  • Ghana: Farmerline
  • Tanzania: Sokoine University of Agriculture, University of Dar es Salaam - Institute of Marine Sciences, Western Indian Ocean Marine Sciences Association (WIOMSA)

In sub-Saharan Africa, fish is an important source of protein, essential micronutrients, and minerals in the diet of most households. Thus, fish and their sustainable production are major contributors to food security and improved livelihood in Ghana and Tanzania. However, supply of fish is low, causing limited consumption levels. Through five investigations, this project builds on previous AquaFish Innovation Lab work to enhance the various facets of aquaculture and its contribution to food supply, nutrition, and health in Ghana and Tanzania. The cost of quality feed frequently limits aquaculture production; hence, researchers continue working to develop cost-effective diets from locally available ingredients (e.g., earthworm, maggot meals) and evaluate the profitability of such feeds in comparison to commercial feeds. To aid fish farmers in determining better methods of feeding, fertilizing, and managing water quality, the project compares fertilization and feeding strategies and evaluates the physical, chemical, and biological characteristics of ponds during grow-out. To better inform stakeholders along the fish-value chain and more efficiently support markets, researchers train farmers and fishermen on the use of a cell-phone-based information system and broaden its applicability to include marine fisheries. Through a household survey on dietary diversity and an analysis of household consumption practices, researchers plan to formulate policy measures that improve aquaculture and fisheries practices in order to increase household food security.

Current Research (2016 - 2018)

  • Experimental Pond Unit Assessment in Tanzania - 16BMA01PU (Work Plan) (Final Report)
  • Increasing Productivity of Nile Tilapia (Oreochromis niloticus) Through Enhanced Feeds and Feeding Practices - 16SFT03PU (Work Plan) (Final Report)
  • Optimizing the Use of Commercial Feeds in Semi-Intensive Pond Production of Tilapia in Ghana; From Nursery to Grow-Out - 16BMA02PU (Work Plan) (Final Report)
  • Fish Consumption and Implications for Household Nutrition and Food Security in Tanzania and Ghana - 16HHI02PU (Work Plan) (Final Report)
  • Enhancing the Functionality and Applicability of Fish Market Information System (FMIS) to Marine Artisanal Fisheries in Ghana - 16MER01PU (Work Plan) (Final Report)

Continuing Research:

AquaFish Innovation Lab 2013-2015 research and capacity building in Ghana and Tanzania built on previous program work through eight investigations to examine the various facets of aquaculture and its contribution to food supply, nutrition, and health. Information sharing and trading through a cell phone-based seafood market information system was explored to increase income for tilapia farmers in Ghana. Capacity building efforts to facilitate the participation of women in shellfish aquaculture in Tanzania was accomplished through a series of trainings and workshops. A value-chain analysis of tilapia and catfish was conducted to help expand aquaculture markets. Results from the various investigations helped to achieve the goals of improving human nutrition, improve efficiency in the value chain, increase incomes for aquaculture producers and traders, diversify production systems, and help reduce postharvest losses through efficient market information sharing mechanisms.

Research (2013-2015)

  • Assessing the Nutritional Impact of Aquaculture Policy in Fish Farming Districts in Tanzania and Ghana - 13HHI01PU (Final Report)
  • Development of a Cell-Phone Based Seafood Market Information System (SMIS) in Ghana: Application to Tilapia - 13MER01PU (Final Report)
  • Value Chain Analysis of Farmed Nile Tilapia (Oreochromis niloticus) and African Catfish (Clarias gariepinus) in Tanzania - 13MER02PU (Final Report)
  • Spat Collection and Nursery Methods for Shellfish Culture by Women - 13QSD01PU (Work Plan)
  • Coastal Women's Shellfish Aquaculture Development Workshop - 13BMA01PU (Work Plan)
  • Identifying Local Strains of Nile Tilapia (Oreochromis niloticus) that are Adapted to Future Climate Conditions - 13IND01PU (Final Report)
  • Evaluation of Invertebrates as Protein Sources in Nile Tilapia (Oreochromis niloticus) Diets - 13SFT01PU (Final Report)
  • Enhancing the Nutritional Value of Tilapia for Human Health - 13SFT02PU (Work Plan)