The University of Massachusetts Dartmouth’s Northeastern Regional Aquaculture Center (NRAC) will host an Industry Summit on September 11 at the Johnson and Wales Inn, located in Seekonk, Massachusetts. This summit will link regional stakeholders in industry and government with university scientists and educators. The goal of the summit is to identify and prioritize the future aquaculture research, education and extension programs in the New England region. When the discussions are complete, copies of the reports will be posted at the NRAC website www.old.umassd.edu/specialprograms/nrac.
Five teams of nationally recognized experts will present their White Paper Report to industry and government representatives at the summit. The White Paper process is an important component of NRAC’s 10-year strategic plan for the development of an environmentally friendly and economically viable aquaculture industry in the Northeast. The White Paper reports will include an assessment of the current status and future potential of commercial aquaculture development in the northeastern United States. Each of the White Paper Team leaders will present their team findings and guide discussions on topics such as land and open water based production systems, economics and finance, aquaculture laws and regulations, and seafood marketing.
The Northeastern Regional Aquaculture Center (NRAC) is one of five regional aquaculture centers located in the United States. Against a backdrop of declining wild fish stocks and billions of dollars in seafood trade deficit, the United States Congress established the NRAC program in 1987 to support aquaculture research and development, as well as demonstration and extension education programs to enhance viable and profitable aquaculture production in the U.S. These efforts are designed to benefit consumers, producers, service industries, and the overall American economy. Today, the Northeast states produce more than two-dozen aquatic crops with an annual value of more than $130 million dollars.
Administratively based at the University of Massachusetts Dartmouth campus, NRAC research programs are funded through the Cooperative State Research, Extension and Education Service of the U.S. Department of Agriculture. For more information on the Northeastern Regional Aquaculture Center Summit call the NRAC office at (508) 999-8157.