World Aquaculture Magazine - June 2020

4 JUNE 2020 • WORLD AQUACULTURE • WWW.WA S.ORG C H A P T E R R E P O R T S I n the past three months, our world has changed dramatically. Most countries have been touched by the COVID-19 pandemic, with a wide range of impacts. Most of us followed confinement measures that were requested by our governments or self-imposed to reduce the spread of the contagion. They also had direct consequences on our professional activities. Universities, research centers, government agencies and private companies focused on ensuring the safety of their employees, meaning in most cases the adoption of homeworking. We have been inventive in pursuing our work remotely, staying in touch with our students, colleagues or customers, using social media and videoconferences. For those of us working with live organisms, we had to be resourceful to maintain them during these challenging times. We have learned to appreciate the people involved in apparently simple activities, without which we cannot live as a society; i.e, healthcare workers, food shops and delivery, police and military, waste collectors … and food producers, including workers at aquaculture farms. In most Latin American countries, from small family farmers to large corporations, we have kept operating and shown our dedication to the production of good- quality food. Fish and other aquatic foods are a key part of our global food systems, with important social, cultural and economic significance. However, disruptions in various supply chains, falling production and decreased consumer demand are putting pressure on prices and job safety. As members of the World Aquaculture Society we are ideally placed to evaluate those effects, but more importantly to help with solutions to recuperate former production levels. We should use our scientific data and knowledge to understand the impacts of the pandemic on fish and aquatic food systems and support local producers to keep operating safely and offer healthy and affordable protein. Another consequence of the lockdown measures that directly affects our Chapter is the postponing of our annual conference. Considering that the health of speakers, exhibitors and the larger community is of utmost importance, the Steering Committee of the Latin American and Caribbean Aquaculture 2020 (LACQUA20) and the Ecuadorian Aquaculture Conference (CEA2020) has decided to reschedule this international event for March 22-25, 2021, keeping Guayaquil as our host city. We will monitor closely the evolution of the pandemic and recommendations made by international agencies regarding the safety for travelling and attending conferences. Please, consult our webpage if you need more information or are interested in sending your abstract, registering, or booking a booth ( LACQUA20). We will also keep you informed on the progress regarding this important conference through our Facebook and LinkedIn accounts. I wish you are all well and my thoughts are with all of you at this time. — Laurence Massaut, President Latin American and Caribbean Chapter I t’s The COVID-19 pandemic is spreading and making everyone’s life difficult. That applies to us, fishers, and fish farmers worldwide. Damage to aquaculture, especially to export-oriented producers, could be far-reaching as seafood exports have been drastically reduced. All smallholders are struggling to continue their productive activities. Major industry events have been postponed, including World Aquaculture 2020 in Singapore. The event will now be held from 14-18 December 2020 at the Expo Convention and Exhibition Centre &Max Atria, Singapore. The APC has elected new members to the 2020 Board of Directors, which will include the following individuals. • President – Diana Chan Pek Sian • Past President – Rohana Subasinghe • President Elect – Jean-Yves Mevel • Treasurer – Romi Novriadi • Director – Salin Krishna • Director – Sagiv Kolkovski • Director – Bibha Kumari • Student Director – Menaga Meenakshisundaram • Secretary/Executive Officer – Natchavee Angsuwattananon The annual meeting of the 2020 Board of Directors will be held virtually on 13 June. The new Board of Directors will become functional immediately after the meeting. The date for the Annual Membership Meeting of 2020 has not yet been decided but it is expected to be held during World Aquaculture 2020 in Singapore in December. Besides our regular monthly board meetings, the APC has not been overly active during the past three months due to the worldwide lockdown. However, given that restarting aquaculture production, processing, and trade will be a challenge for everyone, the APC is organizing a series of webinars that will be held over the next three months to make the aquaculture community in Asia aware of opportunities to restart businesses under the “new normal.” This is my last column as President of the Asian Pacific Chapter. My successor, Diana Chan Pek Sian, will continue to update you regularly on APC activities. — Rohana Subasinghe, President Asian Pacific Chapter