August 2015
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Welcome to FISHBOOST's producer special newsletter

Globally there is an increasing demand for aquaculture products. There is a high potential for improving efficiency, profitability and sustainability of the European aquaculture sector. The development of better and more breeding programmes makes a major contribution to these improvements. The European research project FISHBOOST will advance aquaculture to the next levels. FISHBOOST works on improving the main components of breeding programmes for the main six fish species produced in Europe.

This special newsletter updates you about recent and upcoming activities in the FISHBOOST project aimed at aquaculture producers.  

For more information check out our website!
In this edition:
  • Survey on producer's perspective on aquaculture breeding and genetics 
  • Workshop 'How to set up a base population and perform selection with control on inbreeding"
  • Brochure developed by FISHBOOST dedicated to producers
  • In the spotlight: Kostas Tzokas from Andromeda, Greece


Producer's perspective on aquaculture breeding and genetics

Selective breeding methods are evolving rapidly, and the implementation of breeding programmes is increasing throughout European aquaculture. Within this context it is important to bring the producer's perspectives on selective breeding in line with scientific developments and the consumers' expectations.

We recognize that it is important to understand and assess producers' perceptions concerning selective breeding in aquaculture and to include their recommendations in the outcomes of the project. Producers' knowledge and perception on breeding are to be surveyed using a questionnaire, whose results will facilitate the development of balanced and sustainable breeding programmes for farmed finfish. This survey will provide us with valuable views and opinions that will help the project's successful development.

We would therefore highly appreciate if you could spend some time to complete the survey. All participating companies will be informed about the outcomes of the survey.

You can find the survey at:


We thank you in advance for your inputs and contributions.



Wageningen University & Nofima
19 october 2015


How to set up a base population and perform selection
with control on inbreeding

Demonstration of two tools for your aquaculture breeding programme

In this workshop, we will demonstrate two tools that manage inbreeding in aquaculture breeding programmes and present the theoretical background for these. One tool is about selecting strains or individuals from different strains for a future breeding programme. We assume that genetic markers are available and used to calculate the relationship among the candidates; phenotypic performance can be included if available. The second tool is about selecting individuals in an ongoing breeding programme with a constraint on the rate of inbreeding assuming discrete or overlapping generations and either individual or group matings. We expect these tools to be useful for all European aquaculture species.

Target audience and assumed knowledge: anybody involved in either running a breeding programme or having plans to set up a breeding programme for aquaculture species. Basic knowledge of  the principles of selective breeding is required.

Where: Campus of Wageningen University and Research, the Netherlands

When: 09:00-17:00 19 October 2015. This date is chosen because it is close to the European Aquaculture Society meeting which is held in Rotterdam, the Netherlands 20-23 October 2015.

Accommodation: Please book your accommodation. We recommend 'Hotel de Wereld' in Wageningen,  +31 317 460 444 and

Price: € 20,- to be payed upon arrival.

Dr. Anna Sonesson, Nofima, Norway (
Dr. Hans Komen (

Anna Sonesson,, +47-93098047
Hans Komen,, +31-317482465.

Registration: email Anna Sonesson,
before October 1, 2015.



Selective breeding has a very high potential for improving the genetic makeup of fish in aquaculture
It just takes one generation to accomplish on average 7-10 % genetic improvement in economically important traits. These improvements can be achieved by using selective breeding in better and efficient breeding programmes, adapted to SMEs and larger companies and markets.

FISHBOOST has developed a brochure specifically dedicated to producers. This brochure explains selective breeding and the status of breeding programmes in aquaculture in Europe. You will also find information on the six finfish species that have a central place in the FISHBOOST project. Read and find out what FISHBOOST can do to advance selective breeding to the next levels!

Interested in the brochure? Take a look here!
In the spotlight:

Kostas Tzokas, Biologist and Broodstock & Selection Program Manager at Andromeda, Greece

'It is fascinating to work with people that are on a higher level of expertise in genetics in aquaculture and to participate in unique and prototype experiments for Mediterranean species.'

Read more about  the work of Kostas at Andromeda!


The research leading to these results has received funding from the European Union’s Seventh Framework Programme for research, technological development and demonstration under grant agreement n° 613611 - FISHBOOST.

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This publication reflects the views only of the author, and not the European Commission (EC). The EC is not liable for any use that may be made of the information contained herein.