Activities in 2010   

Sustainable Aquaculture and Management of Aquatic Resources 

Centre for Biodiversity Research had successfully organized the second part of its Agriculture Technology Seminar Series recently, with the theme "Sustainable Aquaculture and Management of Aquatic Resources". Held on Saturday, 13th November 2010 at the UTAR Perak Campus Auditorium A003, the seminar saw the participation of about 70 people from the public, industry and universities. With a good mix of speakers from the academia, industry and government, the seminar saw an active deliberation on the use of recirculation aquaculture systems, re-utilization of ex-mining ponds and land, and other related issues that are of concern to the aquaculture community, industry and interest groups in Malaysia.

The seminar started off with a welcoming speech by the Vice President of UTAR (R&D and Commercialization), Prof. Dr. Lee Sze Wei, who commented that the organizing of these Agriculture Technology Seminar Series is not only timely to address the nation’s concern to increase food yield, but also in line with UTAR’s mission to launch its Agriculture Bachelor’s degree programme at the Perak Campus in year 2011. 

                                                         Vice President of UTAR (R&D and Commercialization), Prof . Dr. Lee Sze Wei, giving the welcoming speech.

UTAR advisor Prof. Emeritus Dr. Yong Hoi Sen then chaired the first session of the seminar, by first giving an overview what aquaculture is all about. He then welcomed the first plenary speaker, Ms. Erin Tan Chung Wei from Syndel Asia Sdn. Bhd., to give a talk on “Sustainable Aquaculture: Is Malaysia Ready?” Ms. Erin stressed on the importance of good environmental management for a long term sustainable aquaculture industry in Malaysia. Next on the list was an academician from Universiti Sains Malaysia, Associate Professor Dr. Alexander Chong Shu-Chien, who gave a talk on the utilization of biotechnology in aquaculture nutrition research. He gave the example of formulating fish feed with highly unsaturated fatty acids (HUFA), not only for the proper development, growth and reproduction of the fish, but also to create fish that are nutritious for human consumption.  

Ms. Erin Tan from Syndel Asia giving her talk on sustainable aquaculture. 

Dr. Alexander Chong from USM, emphasizing the importance of proper feed formulation for the fish.

The next speaker was from the government agency, represented by Mr. Chin Thiam Hin of the Department of Minerals and Geoscience, Malaysia. He first gave an overview of the distribution of ex tin-mining lands in Malaysia, mainly in Klang and Kinta Valley, and how these lands had been transformed into other productive and successful landuse. He then gave some examples of activities conducted by his department which included aquatic farming and water surface farming

Mr. Chin Thiam Hin of the Department of Minerals  and Geoscience, Malaysia. giving his talk.  

Professor Dr. Chong Ving Ching from Universiti Malaya,who spoke on converting palm oil mill effluent (POME)

After breaking from lunch, Associate Professor Dr. Alan Ong Han Kiat, chairperson of the organizing committee, took turn to chair the following sessions. He first welcomed another academician, Professor Dr. Chong Ving Ching from Universiti Malaya, who spoke on converting palm oil mill effluent (POME) as a feed for phototrophic bacteria, which in turn serves as a feed for the high-value fish, marble goby, or more commonly known as ketutu or soon hock. Ending the line of speakers for the day was Mr. Bluey Chew and Mr. Lor Kar Loon, from Recirculation Aquaculture Systems Sdn. Bhd. They gave an alternative aspect of fish farming - the usage of a recirculating aquaculture fish tank system, which could greatly reduce land and water requirements, while also offering a high degree of control of the culture environment at the same time.

Ending the seminar was a lively discussion between the floor and the panel led by Tuan Haji Rosly Hassan from the Fisheries Research Institute, Penang and Professor Emeritus Dr. Yong Hoi Sen, both sides sharing their insights, trials and tribulations of the aquaculture industry in Malaysia. 

Mr. Lor Kar Loon, from Recirculation Aquaculture  Systems Sdn. Bhd., explaining the RAS system.    

  A lively discussion with between the panel and the floor, ending the seminar for the day.