Fish diets supplemented with Gracilaria by-products

A study published in the journal “Aquaculture” by CIIMAR researchers revealed that the by-products of the processing of the red alga Gracilaria sp. can be applied as supplements in the diets of sea bream, positively influencing the intestinal microbiota and skin color of these fish, without compromising their growth.

This work also evaluated the effect of these diets on the quality of the sea bream fillet. In the future, it is intended to evaluate the immunomodulatory potential of algae by-products in sea bream. To know more about the study, please follow the link.


The CIIMAR project Probio Vaccine will receive € 10,000 from U.Porto Inovação BIP proof programme to enhance research results. 


ProbioVaccine project responds to the very current need of oral aquaculture vaccines, given the complexity of vaccinating fish by injectable route, as explained by the CIIMAR reseracher Cláudia Serra, the researcher responsible for the project.


BIP Proof, in addition to being an important recognition for the team, is also an incentive to continue working. The value of the prize will essentially be used to improve the technology and also in vivo tests on the target aquaculture species, in order to establish the protective effect of oral vaccines.


CIIMAR is one of the partner institutions of SIDESTREAM European Consortium in Blue Bioeconomy. SIDESTREAM aims to produce new ingredients for aquaculture by recycling resources that, until know, were considerate waste.


To know more check the link.


Launched in 2017, SEAFOODTOMORROW project concluded in April 2021 and laid the foundations to strengthen the seafood production and processing industry in Europe and safeguard sustainable seafood for future generations.


Funded by the EU Horizon 2020 program, SEAFOODTOMORROW has developed innovative solutions to tackle some of the seafood industry’s biggest issues: sustainability and ensuring the safety, quality, transparency and availability of products that meet consumer needs.


Seafood is an important source of high-quality protein and is naturally rich in valuable nutrients for a healthy diet. Approximately three billion people rely on (wild-caught and farmed) seafood as a primary source of protein. As both the world population and aquaculture continue to expand, it is vital to develop new, innovative and eco-friendly solutions to ensure that global seafood security and quality meet market demands.


Launched in 2017, SEAFOODTOMORROW aimed to tackle these challenges. The project concluded in April 2021. To know more details about the achievement of this project please check the press release.


The CIIMAR study “The Use of Defatted Tenebrio molitor Larvae Meal as a Main Protein Source Is Supported in European Sea Bass (Dicentrarchus labrax) by Data on Growth Performance, Lipid Metabolism, and Flesh Quality” published in Frontiers in Physiology demonstrate that fish meal replacement by defatted Tenebrio molitor larvae meal is largely feasible in European sea bass without detrimental effects on growth performance, nutrient utilization, intestinal integrity, and flesh nutritional and textural quality.


The authors Ana Basto and Luisa M.P. Valente from CIIMAR also were able to study the underlying mechanisms involved in nutrient metabolism, namely lipid metabolism, while using defatted Tenebrio molitor larvae meal to replace fish meal by defatted Tenebrio molitor larvae meal on fillet quality of European sea bass.


Further research is needed to fully validate such nutritional approach at farm level throughout the production cycle.


To see all the details of this study please check the link.

Togra Mara Access2Sea: Call for Expressions of Interest/Application launched

Pilot project IRELAND

The application process for Access2Sea’s Ireland pilot project is now open, the deadline for receipt of applications is July 7, 2021 @4pm local time. Click below to download Gaeilge and English application forms.

Léiriú Spéise ACCESS2SEA Gaeilge 110621

Expression of Interest ACCESS2SEA_Eng 110621



The information below is an excerpt from the programme manual for Access2Sea explaining the pilot Action 3’s stated objective to “…manage a pilot marine site in Ireland to demonstrate innovative, technology-led and cost-effective models and practices to add value to aquaculture products in a sustainable manner.”

To that end, the application/expression of interest form has called for:

“Expressions of interest containing elements of cold storage, algae drying and ice facilities as described in the project manual, as well as innovative technologies would be welcomed.”

Programme Activities

Údarás na Gaeltachta will assume responsibility for managing the development of a marine pilot-site in Ireland.  Through providing dedicated infrastructure, facilities and services, this development initiative will add value to aquaculture products in a sustainable manner drawing on the endogenous marine development resource within the region.

Through the programme implementation, Údarás na Gaeltachta will build effective collaborative partnerships with private sector enterprises and industry-led sectoral clusters trading in national and  international aquaculture markets.

The pilot project will be located in the Atlantic coastal districts of Ireland’s Gaeltacht regions.  The project will integrate the effective combination of renewable energy and smart technologies and develop a series of valorisation protocols which will be both scaleable and replicable across other rural and coastal development environments.  The dissemination strategy will target industry stakeholders, sector-wide consortia and public development agencies with a marine-resource development remit.



Action 3: Sustainable aquaculture activities Pilot Project (IRELAND: ÚDARÁS + WESTBIC)

In collaboration with its business development partners at Westbic, and in association with marine enterprises of regional scale and significance which will be drawn from the Údarás na Gaeltachta’s current client base, the agency will develop and manage a pilot marine site in Ireland to demonstrate innovative, technology-led and cost-effective models and practices to add value to aquaculture products in a sustainable manner.


  • Identify and recruit companies located within the Gaeltacht region trading in aquaculture products (algae, finfish or shellfish).
  • Building on the sector-specific commercial and enterprise development knowledge-base which will be developed under WP 6, and based on the scientific and technical input from other partners delivering on the objectives set out in the other WPs, the agency will identify and prioritise those developments which demonstrate clear capacity to deliver new valorisation opportunities within the aquaculture supply chain.
  • In conjunction with industry partners, and through deploying renewable energy and smart technology design, the agency will build and commission a bespoke unit to include a cold room, a dryer for algae, an ice plant for fish. These infrastructure and facilities will maximise the quality, viability and shelf-life of the goods.
  • Through working with scientific partners drawn from the regional HEIs and marine research and development agencies, the agency will link with regional industry stakeholders to undertake a demonstration project aimed at developing innovative and efficient techniques to add value to aquaculture products.
  • Monitor, document and evaluate the process outputs generated through the investment in the pilot marine site
  • Provide customised training interventions targeting marine industry stakeholders to develop skills, knowledge and capacity at industry level in relation to the valorisation of products
  • Profile the pilot project as a demonstration initiative with relevance to the aquaculture sector within the region, throughout Ireland and amongst the broader regions from where the consortium partners are drawn
  • Identify the possibilities for scaling-up and replicating the pilot project by examining the technical dimensions of the process, the cost benefit analysis and the return on investment measures which the project will generate with a view to establishing a larger scale, commercial plant in the medium-term
  • Document the process and the results of the marine pilot site through the production of a technical factsheet as part of an overall case study report which will examine the commercial and technical feasibility and potential impact of future investment on a larger commercial scale
  • Communicate this knowledge to other partners and stakeholders in the other regions of the project through partner meetings, site visits, media website and other media platforms.
  • Disseminate the results of the marine pilot site through various marine fora.

Ocean Hackathon 2021 – Call for Challenges (Cádiz- Spain) – Deadline 13/6/2021

You have a simple idea coming from a need of sea users?
You have a more mature project that needs a boost or special expertise?


Develop useful and innovative technology-based artefact that address real-life problems and find solutions for a more sustainable ocean.

Submit your challenge as a physical or legal person in one of the 18 cities organising the event.

In Cadiz, the 2021 Edition is dediated to Marine Cultivation and Aquaculture and organized in the framework of “Access2sea”.





Deadline 13 June 2021


Once your challenge accepted, participate to the 6th edition of Ocean Hackathon® from 5th to 7th November 2021 and perhaps be chosen to represent your city during the Grand Finale in December 2021.

Ocean Hackathon® is a unique opportunity to:

• work in team with people of different disciplines in a studious but relaxed atmosphere
• experience an idea around the sea
• access to a variety of marine data
• be helped by coaches with different expertises (data science, IT, marine science, business, etc.)
• join local and international communities interested in data and ocean.


More information:


A European project to promote new recycling methods in the fishing industry

INDIGO is an Interreg European project that brings together 10 partners between France and UK to develop biodegradable fishing net and to improve the recycling of fishing gear.

“The main expected result is to develop a prototype fishing gear that is resistant and biodegradable in the marine environment. Professionals from the fishing and aquaculture sectors have been involved in the project from the beginning to ensure that the new products meet their needs and that they can then use them. The aim is also to influence new regulations.”

INdIGO aims to cover the entire fishing gear production chain, from formulation, filaments manufacturing, to prototype net development. The deployment of the net at sea, durability tests and technical and economic analysis are also planned. Finally, a life-cycle analysis will be completed to avoid pollution transfer.
As part of the project, a mobile application to locate fishing gears that have already been lost has been developed and is available on the website of the project.

To get more information about the project:

Application of sensors in precision aquaculture: webinar overview

Hosted by Swansea University’s Centre for Sustainable Aquatic Research (CSAR) in collaboration with the Waterford Institute of Technology on the 25th of May 2021, the webinar had 11 speakers presenting to an audience of over 150 participants from 33 countries.   Below is an overview of all talks which can be downloaded. The full webinar can be watched on YouTube.

Dr Sara Barrento, marine biologist and science communicator at CSAR, introduced the topic and noted that the motivation behind precision aquaculture relates to developments in real-time sensor technologies, linked to the need for sustainable management when farms are getting bigger, moving further offshore, and aiming towards restorative aquaculture.




Dr Barrento also presented the Access2Sea project pilot case study on lumpfish welfare. The CSAR team is developing The Lumpfish Welfare Watcher a web-based application that will calculate the BMI (body mass index) of lumpfish and determine the proportion of fish that are emaciated, underweight, and normal, along with recommendations for action. The application will also calculate the Lumpfish Operational Welfare Score Index (LOWSI) based on four visual indicators (skin damage, eye condition, caudal fin damage and suction disc deformities), and the relative weight.

Prof. Carlos Garcia de Leaniz, director of the Centre for Sustainable Aquatic Research, Swansea University, introduced the STREAM project: Sensor Technologies for Remote Environmental Aquatic Monitoring. The project aims to monitor the Coastal and Estuarine environment around both Ireland and Wales using affordable sensors to support local coastal activities including aquaculture.



Dr Sofia Teixeira of Tyndall Institute in Ireland presented smart sensors for wellness and health in aquaculture. These sensors are non-invasive and provide rapid tests to monitor health by measuring indicators, such as cortisol and other parameters, that have wide applications in the assessment of immune competence, stress, growth, and behaviour.




Prof. David Gethin, of the Welsh Centre for Printing and Coating (WCPC), Swansea University, gave a brief overview of commercial sensors and highlighted the benefits of printable sensors – they are less expensive and can measure a range of parameters in an integrated system. But printable sensors need to be calibrated against laboratory and commercial devices, and their durability still needs to be tested and improved. Prof. Gethin also provided an overview of printing methods and sensors being developed in the STREAM project.


Brian O’Loan, of Bord lascaigh Mhara, gave an informative talk focusing on shellfish aquaculture and sensor deployment in the South East of Ireland. He started by pointing out the value of the shellfish aquaculture in this region and the impacts of Covid-19. The talk carried on with data from several projects showing multiple monitoring sensors deployed across three bays. Mr O’Loan concluded by pointing out that the shellfish industry needs more monitoring to protect shellfish, real-time data with notifications, and cheaper sensors capable of monitoring new parameters over greater areas.

Paul Shanahan, of the National Maritime College of Ireland, highlighted the advantages of the radar system to provide accurate local weather information which can be disseminated to social media. He explained the type of radar used, its main operating characteristics, and the location of the deployment sites in Ireland. In 2022 it is expected a radar system to be deployed in Swansea, Wales.



Paul Howes, Manager of the Centre for Sustainable Aquatic Research, focused on the unique facilities and projects taking place in CSAR, using a variety of species from microalgae to fish, and topics such as aquaponics and aqua biotech. Dr Pete Jones focused on experimental lab work using sensors to determining preference and avoidance thresholds for marine organisms. Dr Josh Jones focused on the mapping opportunities and challenges for aquaculture and fisheries, using relevant data from sensors.


Gyopar Elekes, of, focused on the use of machine vision technology that can access lumpfish clinging behaviour. The technology uses underwater cameras to record stereoscopic images, the AI and deep learning algorithms allow collecting key data which will then inform on the number of fish, define thresholds for fish density and, in the case of lumpfish, access the proportion of fish clinging and swimming.



Christian Berger, of PEBL – Plant Ecology Beyond Land, focused on the importance of monitoring low trophic sea farms: the data can be used to inform on the ideal location of new aquaculture sites, create optimized harvest schedules, provide early warning and troubleshooting and validate sustainable objectives (carbon, nitrogen, biodiversity). He presented the SeaLens: a low-cost sea farm monitoring tool and a case study on a proposed seaweed and shellfish farm in Skye.


Application of sensors in precision aquaculture: presentation available to download

Over 150 participants attended the webinar on the Application of sensors in precision aquaculture, on the 25th of May, 2021. The presentations are now available to download.

  1. Setting the stage: what is precision aquaculture?
    Dr Sara Barrento, Centre for Sustainable Aquatic Research (CSAR), Swansea University
  2. Access2Sea: New Opportunities for More Competitive and Sustainable Blue Growth in the Atlantic Zone
    Dr Sara Barrento, Centre for Sustainable Aquatic Research (CSAR), Swansea University
  3. STREAM: Sensor Technologies for Remote Environmental Aquatic Monitoring
    Prof. Carlos Garcia de Leaniz, Centre for Sustainable Aquatic Research (CSAR), Swansea University
  4. Application of sensors for fish health and welfare in aquaculture
    Dr Sofia Teixeira, Tyndall National Institute, Ireland
  5. Overview of Printable Sensors
    Prof. David Gethin, The Welsh Centre for Printing and Coating (WCPC), Swansea University
  6. Shellfish Aquaculture and Sensor Deployment in the Southeast of Ireland
    Brian O’Loan, Bord Iascaigh Mhara
  7. Coastal Monitoring Radar
    Paul Shanahan, National Maritime College of Ireland
  8. Aquaculture at the Centre for Sustainable Aquatic Research using sensors
    Paul Howes, Dr Pete Jones, and Dr Josh Jones, Centre for Sustainable Aquatic Research, Swansea University
  9. Reverse engineering a machine vision solution for aquaculture
    Gyopár Elekes,
  10. SeaLens technology to monitor 3D aquaculture in Wales
    Christian Berger, PEBL- Plant Ecology Beyond Land