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COUNTRY REVIEW, Economic evaluation of mud crab farming under different. production systems in India,R SATHIADHAS T M NAJMUDEEN. Central Marine Fisheries Research Institute Indian Council of Agricultural Research Kerala India. Apart from penaeid shrimp culture crab farming and fattening and other several diversified. aquaculture practices are now emerging as viable ventures in India About 11 types of crab. products are being exported from India with an average unit value realization of US 3 73 kg. pinpointing its importance in the foreign exchange earnings An economic evaluation of. mud crab culture fattening and fattening with composite culture of shrimp finfish has been. attempted in this paper The major operating cost was that of seed and it was higher for crab. fattening 87 of the total operating cost Feed costs were very low compared to that of. shrimp farming Annual profit obtained was US 22812 5 ha 1 year 1 for culture and US. 30820 8 ha 1 year 1 for fattening Economic indicators such as net profit rate of return pay. back period and breakeven price indicate that crab fattening culture is much more profitable. than any other coastal aquaculture operations currently in practice provided hatchery. production is established in the country to ensure adequate supply of mud crab seeds. Keywords economics mud crab Scylla serrata crab products crab landings. Introduction, Aquaculture is emerging as one of the fastest growing industries at the global level where. India occupies second position with a production of fish crustaceans and molluscs of about. 2 1 million tonnes year 1 FAO 2002 In spite of the availability of different technologies for. diversified farming practices of various candidate species coastal aquaculture in India is. synonymous with shrimp culture for which hardly 10 of the potential area is currently. utilised Ganapathi Viswakumar 2001 The major reason for this limited utilisation is the. non adoption of appropriate location specific production systems to obtain optimum profit. Although penaeid shrimp culture started as a lucrative industry recently white spot and other. diseases have caused a serious setback which prompted the farmers to find an alternative that. could promise comparable profits to shrimp farming Devaraj Appukuttan 2000 The. Indo Pacific swamp crab Scylla serrata commonly called as mud crab is now widely. regarded as one of the most promising alternatives to penaeid shrimp culture in India. Correspondence Dr R Sathiadhas Principal Scientist and Head Socio Economic Evaluation and. Technology Transfer Division Central Marine Fisheries Research Institute Tatapuram P O P B. No 1603 Cochin 14 Kerala India Tel 0484 391407 Fax 91 484 394909 E mail. rsathiadhas seettd yahoo com,Aquaculture Economics Management 8 1 2 2004 99. 100 Economic evaluation of mud crab farming in India R Sathiadhas T M Najmudeen. Site selection is a decisive factor in the success of the aquaculture of a particular species. Instead of converting the unutilised under utilised and less productive areas for more and. more shrimp farming the culture of suitable alternative species could be substituted ensuring. maximum production and optimum profit with sustainability of the ecosystem Moreover the. outbreak of viral diseases has compelled shrimp farmers to go for crop rotation or a fallow. period The great demand and high price of mud crabs in the domestic and foreign markets. has motivated the farmers to expand mud crab culture utilising the locally available wild. seeds Mud crab farming and fattening activities are expanding in recent years in states like. Andhra Pradesh Tamil Nadu and Kerala But the pace of development has been quite slow. compared with shrimp culture due to lack of baseline information and the non availability of. seeds in sufficient quantity at the appropriate time Although India is bestowed with 1 19. million hectares of brackish water area suitable for aquaculture activities aquaculture is. confined to an area of less than 0 12 million hectares Raj et al 1998 Hence there is enough. scope to develop crab farming in the unutilised potential areas which are not fully conducive. for shrimp farming, Exports from crabs and crab products from India for the last two decades indicate.
increasing demand About 11 types of crab products are being exported from India with an. average unit value realisation of US 3 73 kg 1 pinpointing its importance in foreign. exchange earnings MPEDA 2000 Even though the average annual crab landings from the. marine sector during the last two decades showed an increasing trend the share of mud crab. was only 4 5 and the major part was contributed by Portunus pelagicus and Charybdis. cruciata However the mud crab Scylla serrata is the high valued species compared to the. other two species both in the local as well as in the export market The only way to meet the. increasing export demand of mud crab is its production through farming fattening. Mud crab is a fast growing species and highly tolerant to salinity variations The only. problem reported in the grow out phase of mud crabs is mortality due to cannibalism Trino. et al 1999 This can be minimised by providing crab shelters for moulting and post moult. crabs Fielder et al 1988 or providing seaweeds such as Gracilaria sp Chen 1990 Low. stocking density is also advisable to reduce mortality due to cannibalism and enhance growth. rate Baliao et al 1981 Economic indicators on mud crab culture at different stocking. densities have been studied Agbayani et al 1990 Samonte Agbayani 1991 Discounted. economic indicators for mud crab monoculture were shown to be highest at a stocking. density of 5000 ha 1 Kristensen 1991 Samonte Agbayani 1991 In India crab. fattening hardening to the marketable size for a short duration is found to be more profitable. than the culture of crabs which takes a period of 4 5 months Kathiravel et al 1997 Anil. Suseelan 2000 Economics of crab fattening in association with shrimp and fish farming in. Kerala also indicated high profitability and investment turnover ratio Sathiadhas et al 1996. Chong 1995 suggests larviculture of crabs as a supplementary method to overcome the. problem of adequate supply of seed for monoculture and for fattening purpose In Australia. the mud crab Scylla serrata is recognised to be a potential candidate for commercial. aquaculture Williams Field 1999 Overton 1997 takes into account the positive and. negative aspects of crab farming On the negative side the competition for wild crab seed. competition for coastal sites for crab ponds and pollution risks and on the positive side the. commercial hatcheries could take the pressure off the wild crab stocks. The present analysis was undertaken with the specific objectives of analyzing the. importance of crabs in India s export front and to evaluate the techno economics of various. crab farming systems in Kerala to provide information for investors and policy makers on. their comparative efficiency,Aquaculture Economics Management 8 1 2 2004. R Sathiadhas T M Najmudeen Economic evaluation of mud crab farming in India 101. Materials and Methods,Data and Analysis, Primary data on production patterns packages of practices followed costs and earnings. employment and labour utilisation were obtained from 10 sample farm units from each. farming system having area ranging from 0 25 ha to one hectare located in the Vypeen Island. of Ernakulam District for a period of two years Secondary data pertaining to annual crab. production have been obtained from the National Marine Living Resources Data Centre of. the Central Marine Fisheries Research Institute and export figures from the publications of. the Marine Products Export Development Authority Percentage analysis was done for. analysing the importance of crabs in India s foreign exchange earnings and to determine the. contribution of different operational cost items to the total cost Comparative economic. analysis of three production systems was done using output input ratio rate of return and. break even analysis The project feasibility was tested using pay back period and net present. worth analysis Sensitivity analysis was also done by working out the net returns at varying. prices of crab seeds,Production Systems, Three different farming systems were evaluated namely crab farming crab fattening and. crab fattening with composite culture of fish and shrimps In the former method young crabs. were being grown in earthen ponds for a period of 4 5 months The grow out culture. occurred in ponds used for prawn fish culture provided with proper fencing As the crabs are. highly cannibalistic especially on freshly moulted animals refugee cages made out of. hollow bamboo pieces or stones were placed inside the ponds to minimise mortality Seed. crabs collected from the wild were purchased and stocked after acclimatisation at the rate of. 6000 ha 1 The animals were fed with bivalve meat trash fish or slaughterhouse wastes at a. daily ration of 8 10 of body weight Daily water exchange was done 35 using the tidal. amplitude Whenever necessary water exchange was carried out by using motor pumps. Juvenile crabs attained a marketable size of 800 900 g in a period of 4 5 months Production. ranged from 2 0 to 3 0 tonnes ha 1 year 1 Costs and revenue data were regularly collected. from the selected ponds at bimonthly intervals for a period of two years and the information. obtained from all the crops were used for annual economic analysis. In the fattening method the soft shelled crabs or water crabs were held in smaller. impoundments for 25 40 days until the shells hardened The fattening system also had. fencing water exchange facility and other environmental conditions as described earlier. Stocking density was 4000 ha 1 with artificial feeding as in the case of farming In a year 5. 6 cycles of fattening hardening could be taken from a pond by this method The total weight. gain ranged 340 350 kg ha 1 in a duration of one month Monthly visits for collecting the cost. and revenue data were undertaken for a period of two years. The composite culture practice of crab fattening with fish shrimp farming in traditional. filtration farms is also picking up momentum because of the very high income received from. polyculture compared to the monoculture of different varieties of shrimps and finfishes. Shrimp such as Penaeus monodon Fenneropenaeus indicus and Metapenaeus dobsoni are. caught in considerable quantities under this system Apart from the shrimp Etroplus. suratensis Pearlspot Mugil cephalus Mullet and Chanos chanos Milkfish are the most. important fishes caught under the polyculture system In addition to natural entry by tidal. influence the fishermen also stock fish juveniles and shrimp seeds according to their. availability Water crabs collected from the landing centres were stocked at 2000 ha 1 crop 1. Water exchange was done mostly using the tidal current The locally available clam meat. Aquaculture Economics Management 8 1 2 2004, 102 Economic evaluation of mud crab farming in India R Sathiadhas T M Najmudeen. slaughter house wastes trash fish etc were used as feed The crabs were harvested at monthly. intervals shrimps were harvested at bimonthly intervals and the fishes were harvested at 6. month intervals Bimonthly visits for a period of two years were made to collect cost data. and details of crabs fishes shrimps caught regularly from the composite culture ponds. The economic analysis of the culture practices was done using parameters such as fixed. costs operating costs gross revenue annual profit rate of return payback period and. breakeven price Depreciation a component of annual fixed cost was calculated according. to the life expectancy of each item in the capital investment The economic feasibility and. efficiency of different production systems were also assessed. Results and discussion, Importance of Crabs in India s foreign exchange front.
The contribution of crabs in India s total marine exports was analysed for the period 1996 to. 2000 using MPEDA Statistics Table1 It is obvious from the table that in 1996 there were. only 4 types of crab products exported from India In 2000 the total number of crab products. in India s export basket rose to 11 indicating there an increasing demand for diversified crab. products in India s export market The different items in the export basket are crab shells. frozen cut swimming crab frozen mud crab frozen crab claws frozen whole crab frozen soft. shell crab frozen stuffed crab frozen pasteurised crab frozen crab meat frozen cut crab with. claws and live crabs Total crab exports was 1 1 of total marine exports in terms of. quantity in 1996 increased to 1 47 in 2000 In terms of value it was 0 99 of total marine. exports in 1996 which increased to 1 46 in 2000 The crab exports stood 6197 tonnes in. 2000 and the value realised was US 19 44 million Contribution by live and frozen mud. crabs together was US 5 5 million in 2000 indicating their enormous scope in the export. Production characters of farming systems, Annual yield from crab fattening was significantly higher than crab culture About 5 6 crops. could be obtained annually through crab fattening as against only 2 crops from crab culture. Average yield from crab culture was 2800 kg ha 1crop 1 and that from fattening was 3100 kg. ha 1crop 1 Table 2 Production details of different components of the composite farming are. shown on annual basis The annual production per hectare constituted 8000 kg of crab 2125. Clem Tisdell ISSN 1365 7305 Aquaculture Economics amp Management 8 1 2 2004 99 Correspondence Dr R Sathiadhas Principal Scientist and Head Socio Economic Evaluation and Technology Transfer Division Central Marine Fisheries Research Institute Tatapuram P O P B No 1603 Cochin 14 Kerala India Tel 0484 391407 Fax 91 484 394909 E mail rsathiadhas seettd yahoo com COUNTRY

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