Low Trophic Aquaculture (LTA) can include unfed shellfish, seaweed and some species of finfish, and can also include fed species that primarily depend on plant products in their feeds. In its new (2021-2030) strategic guidelines for a more sustainable and competitive aquaculture sector, the European Commission aims to promote among others, integrated multi-trophic aquaculture systems (IMTA) and the diversification to lower-trophic species.
Bivalves and seaweed
We largely concentrate on studies into the aquaculture of animals that naturally feed at low trophic levels such as bivalves, including mussels and oysters, and on seaweeds. Dr Henrice Jansen from the Aquaculture and Fisheries group (AFI) and dr Marnix Poelman) at Wageningen Marine Research (WMR) study interactions between seaweed and shellfish innovations in the offshore domain.
Marine carrying capacity
The carrying capacity of the sea is an important determining factor for the sustainable production of marine food. Prof. Jaap van der Meer is special professor Sustainable Marine Food Production at the Aquaculture and Fisheries group, and works at Wageningen Marine Research. He focuses on modeling the energetics of individual organisms and using these models as building blocks within population and community models.
Dr Sander van den Burg from Wageningen Economic Research (WEcR) develops economic models for the sustainable development of aquaculture. He has a broad interest in opportunities for a biobased economy, in particular the sustainable use of aquatic biomass (algae, seaweeds, mussels).