Economic Relationship between Aquaculture and Wild Capture Fisheries

Former JIMAR economics specialist Kelly Davidson and University of Kentucky graduate student Devie Poerwanto conduct an in-person 
        survey at a Hawaii Times supermarket.
Former JIMAR economics specialist Kelly Davidson and University of Kentucky graduate student Devie Poerwanto conduct an in-person survey at a Hawaii Times supermarket.

The expansion of marine aquaculture, particularly in the U.S., is the subject of much debate. Marine aquaculture has a close relationship with ocean wild-capture fisheries, and a wide range of interactions occur between aquaculture and capture fisheries. It is important to understand the economic impacts and economically driven factors involved in marine aquaculture in order to ensure its sustainable development.

PIFSC economist Minling Pan, former JIMAR economic specialist Kelly Davidson, and JIMAR economist Kolter Kalberg, with partners at the University of Kentucky, conducted a series of research projects to examine consumer preferences toward farm-raised vs. wild-caught fish and to evaluate the importance of preference-related attributes across species. Projects included:

  • A study of consumers' willingness to pay (WTP) for wild-caught marine fish vs. farm-raised fish was conducted in Hawaii. The study showed that respondents from Hawaii preferred wild-caught fish (salmon and tuna) to the farm-raised counterpart. Consumers in Hawaii are willing to pay $10.94/lb more for wild-caught tuna. Similarly, consumers in Hawaii are willing to pay $5.02 per pound more for wild-caught salmon than farm-raised salmon.
  • A study to investigate geographic and demographic effects on consumer preferences regarding wild-caught vs. farm-raised fish. The study compared the responses from identical survey questionnaires fielded in two U.S. states (Hawaii vs. Kentucky) featuring distinct cultural and geographical differences. The results from the study showed significant differences between the two states in consumers' preferences for wild-capture fish vs. marine aquaculture products.
  • A follow-up study to further investigate geographic and demographic effects on consumers' willingness to pay for aquaculture seafood products vs. wild caught products. Specifically, that effort involved fielding the survey in two additional states (one coastal state (Florida) and one inland state (Colorado)) to confirm the findings of the previous study and to further investigate geographic and demographic effects on consumer preferences.

These studies culminated in a special issue of Aquaculture Economics & Management devoted to the economic relationship of aquaculture and wild-capture fisheries, guest edited by Minling Pan and University of Hawaii economist PingSun Leong.

In addition, PIFSC researcher Pan convened the first-ever session on economics at the North Pacific Marine Science Organization (PICES) conference, held October 2011. This session attracted broad participation from economists and experts from all the PICES member countries: China, Canada, Japan, Korea, Russia, and USA.

Publications

Davidson K, Pan M, Hu W, Poerwanto D 2012. Consumers' Willingness to Pay for Aquaculture Fish Products vs. Wild Caught Seafood - A Case Study in Hawaii. Aquaculture Economics and Management 16(2): 136-154. DOI: 10.1080/13657305.2012.678554

Presentations

Kalberg K
2013. Evaluation of the Geographic Impact on Consumer Preferences for Aquaculture and Wild Captured Seafood; an Interaction Analysis Approach to the Conjoint Choice Model. World Aquaculture Society Aquaculture 2013, Economics and Marketing (WAS 2013), Nashville, Tennessee. February 24.
Pan M
2012. Economic Relations between Wild-Capture Fisheries and Marine Aquaculture: Consumer Preferences for Wild-Caught and Farmed Fish. Skretting Australasian Aquaculture Conference, Melbourne, Australia. May 1-4.
Davidson K, Pan M, Poerwanto D, Hu W
2011. A Survey of Demand Preferences for Aquaculture across Geographically Distinct Markets. National Aquaculture Extension Conference 2011, Memphis, Tennessee. June 5-7.
Pan M, Davidson K, Poerwanto D, Hu W
2011. Consumer Preference between Wild Capture and Marine Aquaculture Fish in Relation to Income and Geographical Differences. 9th Asian Fisheries and Aquaculture Forum (9AFAF), Shanghai Ocean University, Shanghai, China. April 21-25.
Davidson K, Pan M, Poerwanto D, Hu W
2011. Measuring the Impact of Socioeconomic Factors on Consumer Preferences for Seafood - A Case Study in Hawaii. 4th International Symposium on Stock Enhancement and Sea Ranching (4th ISSEER), Shanghai Ocean University, Shanghai, China. April, 21-25.
Davidson K, Pan M
2010. Consumers' Willingness to Pay for Aquaculture Fish Products vs. Wild-Caught Seafood - A Case Study in Hawaii. The North Pacific Marine Science Organization (PICES) 2010 Annual Meeting, Portland, OR. October 22–31.