MI cultivates aquaculture

(June 18, 1998, Gazette)

By Diana Quinton

Aquaculture '98, the annual conference of the Aquaculture Association of Canada, set the tone for the opening of the Marine Institute's new aquaculture facility.

The aquaculture facility officially opened its doors on June 1. Approximately 75 participants were treated to the cold ocean environment as they stood patiently in the pouring rain under a drenched canopy during the event. The facility was opened by Gilbert Normand, Secretary of State (Agriculture and Agrifood; Fisheries and Oceans) and provincial fisheries minister John Efford. Also on hand were Memorial President Dr. Arthur May, Leslie O'Reilly, executive director of the Marine Institute, and Marc Kielly, executive director of the Newfoundland Aquaculture Industry Association.

At the opening, Dr. May said the new facilities complement the aquaculture capabilities and infrastructure available in other parts of the university.

"Memorial's Fisheries and Marine Institute continues to be responsive to the needs of this important emerging industry," he said.

Mr. O'Reilly said the Marine Institute is already home to an expert team of aquaculture specialists.

"The new facility will greatly enhance the hands-on experience that students gain on campus and will help prepare them for their work terms and subsequent careers."

MI's $1.2 million aquaculture facility features state-of-the-art fish husbandry operations and specialized laboratories for teaching and research. The facility provides classroom, laboratory and student services for advanced technical and scientific training in the field of aquaculture as well as research services and support to the province's aquaculture industry. It was constructed through funding from the Marine Institute and the aquaculture component of the Canada/Newfoundland Agreement on Economic Renewal. The Marine Institute contributed $643,000 while the agreement contributed $520,000.