Sustainable aquaculture practices launched at Cochin airport’s Golf Club – BusinessLine

S.Suhas, MD CIAL along with K.N.Raghavan, Chairman MPEDA inaugurating the acqua culture pilot project at CIAL by releasing fish seeds to CIAL Golf Club’s water body.
Cochin International Airport Ltd has introduced aquaculture practices at CIAL Golf Club water bodies. As part of the business diversification programme, CIAL opted for fish farming.
The Marine Products Export Development Authority (MPEDA) in association with the Rajiv Gandhi Centre for Aquaculture joined hands with CIAL for eco-friendly sustainable cage farming in the airport’s Golf club water bodies . 
CIAL managing director S Suhas said: “Aquaculture offers many environmental benefits, relative to other forms of livestock farming. In the last five years, the aquaculture industry has reduced its carbon footprint through the gradual assimilation of new production systems; reduction in greenhouse gas emissions, cut in usage of freshwater per unit produced, improved feed management practices, and adopted new farming practices”.  As sustainability Champions, CIAL strives for climate-friendly practices generating sustainable environmental, social, and economic outcomes for the long term, Suhas said.
The CIAL Golf Club has seven water bodies of varying sizes totalling 16 acres. The ponds are deep and big in size. Normal or conventional pond culture practices will not be suitable here. In cage fish farming, there is no need to drain the water bodies and management of them are flexible with multiple production units. Easy and low-cost harvesting are also added advantages.
The MPEDA and RGCA will provide testing for periodic disease diagnosis, water quality analysis and seeds at a subsidised rate from their hatchery at Valarpadam. The species recommended by MPEDA-RGCA for the pilot project are GIFT Tilapia, Seabass and Pearl spot.
With the introduction of the cage fish farming, the unutilised water bodies can be converted into a productive use generating additional income for the Golf club. The CIAL has successfully executed the idea of Total Sustainability Management (TSM) in its golf course where treated water from the its sewage treatment plant is used for water harvesting with the help of 12 artificial lakes.