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Blue Revolution (Aquaculture)

Aquaculture Production, Fish Farming, Invertebrate Culture, Environmental Impacts Of AquacultureSeaweed culture

The term "blue revolution" refers to the remarkable emergence of aquaculture as an important and highly productive agricultural activity. Aquaculture refers to all forms of active culturing of aquatic animals and plants, occurring in marine, brackish, or fresh waters.

Aquaculture has long been practiced in China and other places in eastern Asia, where freshwater fish have been grown as food in managed ponds for thousands of years. In recent decades, however, the practice of aquaculture has spread around the world. Many species of freshwater and marine organisms are being cultivated as highly productive and nutritious crops for consumption by humans. The tremendous growth of aquaculture has been stimulated by knowledge that there are intrinsic limitations to the productivity of the wild, unmanaged aquatic ecosystems that humans have traditionally exploited as sources of fish, aquatic invertebrates, and seaweeds. Moreover, in a depressingly large number of cases, the usable productivity of natural aquatic ecosystems has been overexploited or otherwise degraded by humans, and the harvested yields have declined substantially.

In many cases, however, the productivity of valuable aquatic species can be greatly increased under managed conditions, and also by genetic selection for varieties having desirable traits, such as higher productivity. The principal goal of aquaculture science is to develop systems by which aquatic organisms can be grown and harvested at high but sustainable rates, while not causing unacceptable environmental damage.

Seaweeds are also grown in large quantities for use as food and as feedstock for the production of alginates and other industrial products. Most aquaculture production occurs in Asia, although there is also a growing industry in North America.

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