On September 25th staff from CDA, USDA and the Colorado Attorney General's Office toured an aquaculture facility to learn more about Colorado’s aquaculture industry. The team was able to learn how fish are grown and stocked, the differences in water sources, regulatory considerations, and fish health and veterinary medicine considerations. Learning more about aquaculture will help CDA and USDA to better support the needs of the industry.
Aquaculture, also known as underwater agriculture, is the cultivation of aquatic animals and plants. It has a long history dating back approximately 4,000 years to China. In the United States, aquaculture began in the late 19th century to boost fish stocks for sport fishing. Aquaculture now accounts for roughly half of the world's seafood supply.
Colorado has approximately 40 licensed aquaculture facilities. These include food production facilities, aquaponics facilities, and bait dealers, but most of these businesses raise sport fish for recreational purposes. Trout is the most popular species grown in Colorado, but many other species are grown as well, including bass, catfish, tilapia, and carp.