29 Mar 2011

University of Hawaii teams up with Starkist cannery in American Samoa

11:38 am on 29 March 2011

The University of Hawaii's Sea Grant Program is working with StarKist Samoa to find out if the cannery can provide a much needed supply of fish feed for local tilapia farms.

Tilapia farms produce an estimated 9,000 pounds of fish per year.

But the main hindrance to the development of tilapia farms is the inconsistent supply of fish feed.

Tilapia farmers used to receive a consistent supply of fishmeal from Chicken of the Sea, but since the departure of the cannery in 2009, the Sea Grant Program has been looking for other alternatives to providing food for the tilapia farms.

Sea Grant's junior extension agent, Ephraim Temple, says the demand for tilapia was assessed in 2004 and it showed the territory consumes about 180,000 pounds of tilapia every year.

He says the Grant will test samples from StarKist's cannery in American Samoa to analyze for nutritional content.