"Quality Tilapia Fingerlings & Hatchery Products"
P.O. Box 110466, Bradenton, FL 34211 USA.
Phone: (941) 744-9698
Fax: (941) 750-9427
E-mail: Jim Riggin
E-mail: Mike Picchietti

Company & Management Background

Aquasafra means water harvest in several Latin based languages. Aquasafra is
owned and operated by hands-on, career hatchery managers. Company partners
Jim Riggin and Mike Picchietti each having 20 years Tilapia hatchery
management experience in the USA, Latin America, Asia and Africa. Our newest
facility, built in 1991 has been paid for and expands by the income produced
from our products. This solid, debt free base, provides low overhead staying
power making us the oldest and largest Tilapia hatchery business in the
United States. In an industry were experience is vital, Aquasafra maintains
the industry track record that secures your seed stock decision. Our
sub-tropical Florida site allows for low cost production and the economies to
maintain and develop on-going genetic improvements in our lines. Our 4-acre
facility encompasses a variety of technologies and systems for stable
production throughout the year. We utilize both low tech outdoor and high
tech indoor recirculating technology for the production of our products. This
combination allows us to manage and control quality, supply, disease and
costs so that only top quality fingerlings and broodstocks are shipped to our
customers. We have installed a 40,000-gallon recirculating growout system to
test and develop various genetic lines in conditions similar to many of our
clients systems. Our location near the airports of Tampa, Orlando and Miami
allows for rapid World access at the lowest costing freight rates in the country.

Aquasafra sets the Standards
Aquasafra Inc., was the first Tilapia hatchery to offer U.S. Tilapia grower's
commercial and consistent quantities of all male, Egyptian Nilotica X Aurea
F1 hybrid fingerlings. This had an immediate and far-reaching impact for the
development of the U.S. Tilapia industry. For the first time Tilapia growers
had a seed supply (gene line) that was consistent in its performance. This
enabled farmers to evaluate and develop their grow-out technology and systems
without the question of unstable genetic lines effecting the results. With
Aquasafra's year round supply reliability, genetic consistency and yearly
staying power word quickly spread as consistent supplies and growth rates
became documented by growers and Universities. Aquasafra continues to set the
standard, providing a platform for overall industry stability and growth.

An Article with the National Aquaculture Law Center
Agricultural Law Research Project
Aquaculture and the Lacey Act

by Elizabeth R. Springsteen
March 2010

Brood Stock Strategy
In a nutshell, the philosophy behind the approach we take to produce our
growout fingerling product can be summed in HYBRIDIZATION. Aquasafra is able
to afford and utilize the integration of several select lines in our final
hybrid product. According to our customers who have compared other
fingerlings side by side with Aquasafra's, our seed has exceeded all
competitors. Our competitor's seed are taken from single species breeding
the same family into each other year after year. Aquasafra seed is superior
because we are taking advantage of hybrid vigor (heterosis), crossing
distinct, non-related lines, resulting in faster growth of either parent.
Besides faster growth our customers have expressed; lower FCR's, increased
resistance to poor water quality and disease, improved live haul transport
and a greater cold tolerance. Bottom line: Aquasafra's fish is the toughest,
fastest growing seed on the market, just ask the multitude of farmers who
have used our fish over the last 10 years. We improved our lines through
traditional selection, growout trails and hard work. With our facility
design, location and low production costs, we are able to produce and select
from larger populations in trait selection. This huge advantage and cost
saving is passed onto our customers and guarantee that Aquasafra will remain
competitive in the years to come.
We stay abreast with the new genetic developments our academic community is
promoting and will utilize these tools once the hype becomes reality. We feel
there is no short cut to basic selection. Beware of unproven promises. We do
not use our customer's facilities to test new and unproven lines, with
Aquasafra your assured proven seed lines with known growth rates. The rest is
up to your management and system.

Independent Species Comparison
In a 1993 ICLARM study, Contribution No. 709., Aquaculture, 111:171-188.
Eight different Nilotica strains were collected from around the world and
evaluated for growth performance and other parameters, in eleven different
farming environments. RESULTS: The Egyptian Manzallah and Ismailia were
consistently the top two performers.

Disease Prevention
As the Tilapia industry continues to grow the tendency to increase densities
also grows. As densities increase so do the conditions for disease problems.
Like any living organism, Tilapia can tolerate and resist the presence of
various pathogens as long as the organism is healthy and managed in a healthy
environment. However, if the fish become stressed and weaken there isn't any
magic bullet, disease free certificate or protocol that can secure the fish
100% from disease, some disease may in fact be endemic. The realities of
commercial farming usually does not allow farms to operate in an isolated,
sealed, bubble-like environment. Live haul trucks, equipment, insects,
plants, snails, snakes, birds, rodents, feed, air, or the soles of operator's
shoes can introduce pathogens. Most disease outbreaks can be traced back to
stress caused by poor water quality, nutrition or rough handling.
The obvious first step to reduce your risk of disease is to start with a fish
you can check on its disease record. What Aquasafra can offer like no other
hatchery is the largest customer base in the industry with the longest track
record of reliability. Our customer references is the best vehicle to
understand our product. Our stocks and fingerlings are continuously tested
and evaluated by customers and third party laboratories. We are happy to
supply these health certificates prior to shipments, which will provide a
recent evaluation of our seed health.

Seed for Thought
After a farm has invested considerable money in plant and equipment the value
of a reliable and proven seed supply is crucial to success. As Tilapia
farmers try to understand, manage and stabilize their production environment,
the importance of having known growth data from a fingerling source is
necessary to evaluate the system. Considering the investment at risk does it
make sense to depend on an unproven or unknown seed supply? Why not use the
same criteria when stocking a Tilapia farm as other farmer's use in selecting
seed stock for poultry pig, beef, horses, dogs or plants? Aquasafra is the
known choice that lowers your risk.

Is Vertical Integration the only Model?
American agriculture is based on vertical integration to achieve low costs.
However, not all industries need to be vertically integrated to achieve low
costs. Consider the Taiwan Tilapia industry as a model. Taiwan has high labor
costs, very high land costs, a climate no warmer than the southern United
States, no advantage in feed or power costs and their markets are located on
the other side of the world. But they are able to produce and export Tilapia
at a cost that allows them to dominate the Tilapia industry! The Taiwan
Tilapia industry is not vertically integrated. It is organized via producer
specialization. It is made up of thousands of individual companies; some
specialize in genetics and larvae production, to sell to others who grow
larvae to various fingerling sizes, who sell to others that size fingerlings
to stocker size, to sell to others who grow to 1 lb. for the whole market and
still others who grow to one kilo for the fillet market. There are separate
brokers who run between the producers linking all their needs, there are live
haulers and processing plants all operating at maximum specialized
efficiency, doing what they do best, providing stability to the whole. The
key is each company finds what they are good at, what they have an advantage
in, depending on the site, experience and finances. Maybe the Tilapia
industry in our hemisphere can learn to crawl and gain experience in one area
before it builds and follows vertically integrated models it doesn't know how
to manage? Maybe, supporting specialists will allow us to reduce costs,
increase management expertise, increase quality, create stability and use our
many comparative advantages? Aquasafra welcomes supply contracts with serious Tilapia businesses.

Egyptian Nilotica Hybrid Growth
Age Week Avg. Wt Grams Avg. Wt. lbs. Growth Day GPD
0* 1 0.00
1 3 0.01 0.29
2 5 0.01 0.29
3 7 0.02 0.29
4 10 0.02 0.43
5 13 0.03 0.43
6 18 0.04 0.71
7 23 0.05 0.71
8 29 0.06 0.86
9 37 0.08 1.14
10 45 0.10 1.14
11 60 0.13 2.14
12 78 0.17 2.57
13 97 0.21 2.71
14 118 0.26 3.00
15 140 0.31 3.14
16 162 0.36 3.14
17 184 0.41 3.14
18 207 0.46 3.29
19 231 0.51 3.43
20 256 0.56 3.57
21 282 0.62 3.71
22 309 0.68 3.86
23 337 0.74 4.00
24 365 0.50 4.00
25 393 0.87 4.00
26 422 0.93 4.14
27 451 0.99 4.14
28 480 1.06 4.14
29 509 1.12
30 538 1.19
31 567 1.25
32 596 1.31
33 625 1.38
34 654 1.44
35 683 1.50 4.14
*0 is 4-6 weeks from hatch. Temp's mid 80's. Densities 80kg/M3, 500 ton system.

June, 1999

©1999-2016 - Aquasafra, Inc.