Transition to HDPE cages in fish farming enhances income and environmental protection

The adoption of plastic cages for fish farming in Kien Giang’s coastal regions marks a significant advancement. Initiated in the 2000s and growing rapidly over the past five years, this method is now recognized for its economic stability. Since 2022, local fishermen have transitioned to using 69 plastic cages, increasing the farming volume to 3,531 cubic meters.

High-density polyethylene (HDPE) plastic cages provide several benefits over traditional wooden ones. They have a long lifespan, high resistance to chemicals, and are immune to corrosion and rust. HDPE cages are durable even in challenging terrains, easy to install, and resilient against strong winds and storms up to levels 10-12. Their flexibility allows for expansion and adaptation to various farming environments, including both sheltered and open sea areas. This has garnered strong support from many agencies, facilitating smooth implementation and high efficiency.

This model is currently being implemented in the island communes of Kien Luong, Kien Hai districts, and the cities of Ha Tien and Phu Quoc. Evaluations reveal that HDPE plastic cages for sea fish farming offer superior productivity, with an average yield of 16 kg of commercial fish per cubic meter—surpassing traditional wooden cages by 4-5 kg per cubic meter. After deducting costs and depreciation, the average profit from each site exceeds VND 170 million per season per cage.

Farmer Ninh Van Son from Hon Nghe commune, Kien Luong district, shared that his family has been engaged in fish cage farming for over 15 years, mainly focusing on cobia, pearl grouper, American red snapper, and golden pompano.

For the 2024 farming season, his family is using two fish rafts with 20 cages to raise over 10,000 fish fingerlings of various types. Currently, Mr. Son utilizes four HDPE plastic cages, while the rest are still wooden.

He also noted that since late 2023, the prices for various farmed fish have remained high, ensuring substantial profits for most farmers. Specifically, cobia is priced between VND 200,000-220,000 per kilogram, and pearl grouper at VND 250,000 per kilogram. His family has sold over 2,000 fish since the beginning of the year, netting over VND 100 million in profit after expenses.

To aid sea fish cage farmers in adopting modern, stable, and sustainable farming techniques, the Kien Giang Agricultural Extension Center will continue deploying 11 sites using HDPE plastic cages and industrial feed in 2024. This initiative, covering a total scale of 1,600 cubic meters, aligns with the current push for sustainable marine farming. Furthermore, the model includes the use of vaccines to prevent widespread fish diseases, reducing the risks associated with large-scale outbreaks.

Additionally, this model supports sea farmers by integrating seaweed cultivation around the cages, which not only boosts income but also contributes to emission reduction in contemporary marine farming practices.


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