What’s an aquaculture innovation?

Examples include technologies that mitigate the occurrence of animal diseases or parasites, or that reduce or eliminate the use of antibiotics to treat animals; technologies that improve production efficiencies at the hatchery or farm levels while mitigating environmental impact; advances in offshore or land-based recirculation technologies; novel feed ingredients; reductions in carbon footprint through improved energy efficiency or regeneration; and social programs designed to improve living and working conditions at the farm or processing levels.

Who is eligible to apply?

Both individuals and companies performing activities related to aquaculture may submit applications. Third parties may also submit an application on behalf of an individual and company.

Who are the judges?

The competition is coordinated by GAA Standards Coordinator Dan Lee. The judges include Lee, GAA President George Chamberlain and GAA Standards Oversight Committee members Alejandro Buschmann of i-mar Research and the Development Center of Coastal Resources and Environments, Dawn Purchase of the Marine Conservation Society and Michael Tlusty of the University of Massachusetts-Boston.

How is the winner determined?

For the second consecutive year, the winner was selected by the GOAL audience. The three finalists were Mike Forbes of Ace Aquatec, Emily Glenn of Arbiom and Adriano Mallmann of Pegasus Science, who all presented at the conference. With just over half of the audience vote, Forbes was chosen as the winner for his Scottish company’s in-water electric stunning device designed to slaughter fish more humanely.

How do I apply?

Applications for the 2020 competition will be accepted in early 2020. This year, a record 43 applications from 20 countries were submitted. Questions about the competition? Contact Dan Lee at dan.lee@aquaculturealliance.org or Steven Hedlund at steven.hedlund@aquaculturealliance.org.

Is the competition sponsored?

Yes. The 2019 competition was sponsored by Preferred Freezer Services.

Who are the previous recipients?

Here are the previous recipients:

Mike Forbes Ace Aquatec

2019

Recipient: Mike Forbes, Ace Aquatec, Scotland
Innovation: Ace Aquatec’s in-water electric stunning device is designed to slaughter fish more humanely. Its Humane Stunner Universal (HSU) is a water-filled pipe lined with electrodes and fish pumped through the pipe are immediately rendered unconscious by the electricity in the water. Each HSU is designed for its particular operating site, be it cage-side harvesting on a boat or barge, a box conveyor belt design for crustaceans, a truck or a land-based operation. The size of the device varies according to the location, with pipes that up to eight meters long to ones confined to a two- or three-meter space.
Sponsor: Preferred Freezer Services
Global Aquaculture Advocate article: Scottish company’s in-water stunning device promises a more humane slaughter

2018

Recipient: Zach Stein, Osmo Systems, United States
Innovation: Osmobot is a water quality monitoring system that uses optical sensing technology to allow farmers to monitor their water quality online. The self-contained sensor system monitors water quality 24 hours a day, delivering results straight to farm managers’ smartphones. It doesn’t require any special expertise to operate, it self-calibrates, and according to the company it costs 90 percent less than any other automated monitoring systems currently on the market.
Sponsor: Skretting
Global Aquaculture Advocate article: Silicon Valley startup eyes U.S., Ecuador markets for water quality sensor ‘Osmobot’

Walt Rakitsky of TerraVia

2017

Recipient: Walt Rakitsky, Senior VP of Emerging Business, Corbion (formerly TerraVia), United States
Innovation: TerraVia’s AlgaPrime™ DHA aquaculture feed ingredient has been manufactured at a facility in Brazil since 2014, running off the steam generated by a sugarcane mill, as part of a joint venture with Bunge Oils. The microalgae is fermented, converting sugars into oils and other ingredients. Already being used by a farmed salmon producer in Chile, AlgaPrime is a perfect complement to traditional aquaculture feed ingredients that will enrich the fish’s omega-3 fatty acid levels.
Sponsor: Preferred Freezer Services
Global Aquaculture Advocate article: Aquafeed ingredient AlgaPrime wins GAA Innovation Award

Karen Pittman

2016

Recipient: Karin Pittman, Professor, University of Bergen, Norway
Innovation: Quantidoc’s mucosal mapping technology is the commercialization of Pittman’s fish biology research, which employs stereology to measure and better understand mucous on gill, gut and skin tissues — the first line of defense for fish. These tissues are crucial in the fight against aquatic diseases and parasites like sea lice, a major challenge for the salmon-farming industry. The application was submitted by Quantidoc CEO Ole Jacob Myre.
Sponsor: Preferred Freezer Services
Global Aquaculture Advocate article: Mucosal mapping architect wins aquaculture innovation award

2015

Recipient: Werner Jost, Director, Camanor Produtos Marinhos Ltda., Brazil
Innovation: Camanor’s AquaScience® technology and its high-density, land-based facility in Natal, Brazil, recycles water for multiple production cycles of Pacific white shrimp while preventing environmental degradation and the use of chemicals or antibiotics.
Sponsor: Preferred Freezer Services
Global Aquaculture Advocate article: High-density shrimp producer wins innovation award

Rodrigo Prado of Usonic

2014

Recipient: Rodrigo Prado, Director, USONIC Ltda., Chile
Innovation: USONIC’s innovation involves the use of ultrasound to control Chilean sea lice (Caligus rogercresseyi) infestations. In numerous trials, the company showed that the application of ultrasound underwater, directly in fish pens, has a lethal effect on juvenile stages of Caligus rogercresseyi. Concurrently, the application of ultrasound has no affect on salmon or marine mammals due to the low power and frequencies used—only 20 KHz per transmitter.
Sponsor: Preferred Freezer Services
GAA announcement: Chilean sea lice solution wins Global Aquaculture Innovation Award

Dr. Sagi accepts the award at GOAL 2013 in Paris, France.

2013

Recipient: Amir Sagi, Ph.D., Professor, Ben Gurion University, Israel
Innovation: Dr. Sagi’s innovation involves a novel biotechnology application to produce all-male populations of the giant freshwater prawn (Macrobrachium rosenbergii) through temporal RNA interference.
Sponsor: Novus International
Global Aquaculture Advocate article: Monosex culture of prawns through temporal androgenic gene silencing