Delishus Fishes will operate an offshore aquaculture farm on a large ship or Seastead, solving logistical and regulatory problems that are currently hampering the development of an industrial scale offshore aquaculture farm. The market looks very attractive because the global demand for fish is growing faster than population growth while supplies are dwindling due to overfishing. The fragmented aquaculture industry makes up less than 50% of the current supply. Regulation in the United States has not kept pace with evolving technology, hampering the relatively new development of open ocean aquaculture which allows fish to grow in large cages moored miles offshore. Using a Seastead as the base of operations, Delishus Fishes will pioneer industrial scale offshore aquaculture.
Seafood commands a high market price, growing in popularity compared to other meats. Demand for meat is growing as the per-capita GDP increases in emerging countries. The US currently has a $9 Billion seafood trade deficit which continues to grow. The overall seafood market shows an insatiable demand for always available, high quality product. As commercial fisheries collapse, and the current aquaculture industry fails to deliver, an enormous opportunity presents itself to the Seasteading community.
Offshore fin-fish aquaculture is in its infancy with several large scale farms beginning operation over the last 5 years. Using large cages moored offshore, teams from US universities first demonstrated the feasibility of offshore aquaculture and then spun off into commercial ventures. Total current production is in the low thousands of tons per year and growing. Initial assessments demonstrate viability and the potential for growth. With no offshore infrastructure, current operations are presented with a logistical problem when feeding and maintaining fish stocks.
Permitting is another constant problem, with many groups opposed to offshore aquaculture, such as commercial fisherman who view it as competition, and environmentalists concerned with the environmental impact. Initial results from university studies show the environmental impact is negligible. The regulatory environment is ripe for seasteading, which would allow the farm to scale in an environment perfect for the production of fish – the open ocean.
Utilizing a coastal Seastead or ship outside of territorial waters but close to a country open to offshore aquaculture would solve two of the largest problems preventing a truly industrial sized aquaculture farm from starting: regulations for growth and limited access to clean water.
Delishus Fishes is a viable opportunity, not only to launch the first actual Seastead, but to pioneer an industry that operates in a large global market with excellent growth rates.