BOGOR – Along with the rapid development of system and technology in shrimp farming, the challenges are also advancing. The majority issues are coming from the availability of pathogen free broodstock and larvae, affordable and good quality of pond production facilities, the spread of disease suspected as Early Mortality Syndrome (EMS), also issues outside of farming technicalities such as access to funding and environmental conservation of farm surrounding.
As an effort to collect information on the latest developments in shrimp farming activities in various regions, YSAI initiated discussion forums with several institutions engaged in this field such as Konservasi Indonesia (Koin), Aceh Aquaculture Initiatives (AAC), Komunitas Pemerhati Udang Windu (Kontinu), Kelompok Masyarakat Pesisir Indramayu (Kompi), and also individual representatives who are actively participating in pushing a sustainable aquaculture development in the area. Those activities are located in Aceh, Indramayu, Sidoarjo, South Sulawesi, and North and West Kalimantan.
The first discussion of the forum was held in mid-December 2020. In this occasion, each agency presented an updated of activities carried out and the obstacles experienced. During discussion participants shared information and input to each other.
Participant from North Kalimantan, Rudi, said that the cooperative that was formed together with his team currently manages a 49-hectare land for tiger shrimp farm development. To date, AMDAL licensing has been completed and potential farmers that expected to operate the farm have been trained in Vietnam on better management practices implementation. His team has also started the discussion with cold processing companies in the area, that ready to purchase the product. Besides all efforts that have been progressed, the main challenge on the development plan currently is the limited availability of effective land for farming as the ponds available now are in a large and irregular size. Rudi and his team expectation is that if there are investors interested to finance the work, they are going to re-design the current pond referring to the system that has been introduced by WWF so the production process and the human resources management can be managed more efficiently.
AAC that is located in Aceh has been actively supporting small-scale farmers through three main programs; providing technical supports, providing agro-input credit, and market access. Ardian, the Director of AAC, mentioned that there has been rapid increase of shrimp farm in western coastline. In an effort to encourage sustainable management of aquaculture activities, apart from the main AAC programs, AAC is also starting to educates farmers on that area the importance of implementing a good SOPs particularly on the importance of IPAL at farm to reduce the risk of disease spread.
Pinrang is well-known of its tiger shrimp commodities. As a community that is active in the development of shrimp farming in the area, Kontinu continues to develop Rica probiotics and natural food Pronima sp., a zooplankton endemic Pinrang to support tiger shrimp production. Beside that, Kontinu is currently in the process of building a 100-hectare tiger prawn area with a concept of Eco Shrimp. One of the main challenge under the team concern during the establishment process is on the the issue of Monodon larvae availability. Kontinu and other producers expect that the government can pay special attention to the scarcity issue, considering the potential market supported by the current relatively higher selling price compared to white leg shrimp.
In Indramayu, Makrus as a representative of Kompi stated that currently, farmers in the area are experiencing a downturn due to the condition that degrading soil quality that resulted in difficulty in growing and managing plankton. Due to the uncertainty of yields, quite significant numbers of farmers have changed their professions as fishermen. To help returning back land condition, Makrus and his team conducted research to find solutions. Based on that, Kompi team developed a liquid feed product, labeled Damai, which supports the growth of zooplankton as Vannamei natural feed. Beside white leg shrimp, Kompi team has stated that this product can also be applied for tiger shrimp, milkfish, and tilapia farming. To date, Kompi team is still improving the product to be able working more optimally.
As a figure who has been promoting shrimp industry development in West Kalimantan, Nanang stated that at this moment his region is experiencing obstacles related to local government programs that currently focusing on palm trees plantation. This condition is commonly to be found in Indonesia that adopts regional autonomy where the regional policy issued is based on its regional leader interest. Due to current local policy, the operational of shrimp farming activities has become affected. Some of the them are caused by high silt content in the river of where farmers sourcing water to start farming because of land clearing for the plantation establishment, declining salinity level, and high iron level found at water.
Koin is an organization that focuses its activity on environmental preservation for promoting a sustainable shrimp farm development. Seeing the high risk of cultivation failure especially for traditional farm, which majority caused by external factors such as high rainfall which has the potential to drastically decrease salinity levels, etc., Koin initiated a collaboration with the Meteorological, Climatological, and Geophysical Agency (Badan Meteorologi, Klimatologi, dan geofisika – BMKG). As an effort to reduce the risk of crop failure, Koin and BMKG formed a daily update system for farmers that allow them to access easily information on potential rainfall, temperature, and flood di daily basis. That way, farmers are able to carry out early prevention. The discussion ended by the agreement among organizations to have a routine discussion. Further, YSAI expects to be able to facilitate partners in formulating solutions of their obstacles, through facilitation and collaboration with relevant partners both with the government and with private parties.