Research Breakthrough Achieves Fish-Free Aquaculture Feed That Raises Key Standards

November 12, 2020
By Allison Arteaga Soergel

After six years of research, a team of scientists at the University of California, Santa Cruz has developed a cost-effective new aquaculture feed that eliminates conventional fish meal and fish oil ingredients while also providing better fish weight gain and higher nutritional value in the filet for humans. The new fish-free feed is the first to demonstrate across-the-board gains in sustainability, performance, economic viability, and human health.

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California Seaweed Festival

The California Seaweed Festival came about from the decades of studying seaweeds, admiring their beauty and learning ways that seaweeds make life better. Many Californians don’t know about the vast kinds of seaweeds that flourish on our coast. With help from California Sea Grant, the first California Seaweed Festival has been organized in 2020, to celebrate all things seaweed in California! For more information, please select: California Seaweed Festival.

Dates will also be listed on our Events page.

Three Categories of Coronavirus Food Assistance Program 2 Payments

Coronavirus Food Assistance Program 2 (CFAP 2) provides producers with financial assistance that gives them the ability to absorb some of the increased marketing costs associated with the COVID-19 pandemic. USDA will accept CFAP 2 applications through December 11, 2020.

There are a wide variety of commodities eligible for CFAP 2 – from alpacas to zucchini. CFAP 2 payments will be made for three categories of commodities – Price Trigger Commodities, Flat-Rate Crops, and Sales Commodities. 

Learn more at farmers.gov/cfap or call 877-508-8364 to speak directly with a USDA employee ready to offer assistance. 

CFPA video

USDA Supports Beginning Farmers and Ranchers

By Sarah Campbell, USDA National Beginning Farmer and Rancher Coordinator · Oct 28, 2020

If you’re new to farming or ranching, access to capital is one of your biggest needs, whether it’s to purchase property or equipment, or to meet operating costs.  USDA offers a variety of loans, which can help producers start or grow their operations.

We know the need is great, and we partnered with the Farm Credit Administration to hold a virtual lending summit, bringing together USDA and our commercial lending partners where we discussed ways to maximize opportunities for new farmers. During this event, a panel of beginning farmers and ranchers discussed their relationships with agricultural lenders and the Farm Service Agency (FSA) highlighting the importance of having a lender they can work with to grow their business.

Read More: How USDA Support New Farmers & Ranchers

Marine Aquaculture Pilot Projects

Deadline for written questions: 11.20.2020
Deadline for submission: 12.14.2020

The Pacific States Marine Fisheries Commission (PSMFC), in cooperation and funding from the NOAA Fisheries Office of Aquaculture, will be issuing approximately $642,000 in grants to fund marine aquaculture pilot projects focusing on sustainable aquatic farming techniques and regional business practices to grow U.S. domestic seafood.

Download the full Request for Proposals (RFP) @ — Download RFP

NOAA Sea Grant & Ocean Acidification Program Funding Opportunity


Dungeness crabs fresh off a commercial fishing boat in Newport, Oregon (Stephen Ward | Oregon Sea Grant).
The National Sea Grant Office and the NOAA Ocean Acidification Program are funding a joint competition to fund proposals that seek to establish, continue, and/or expand collaborations between researchers and the shellfish aquaculture industry. Specifically, applications to this competition should utilize new or existing research/industry partnerships to study how ocean and coastal acidification in combination with other stressors impacts shellfish aquaculture. Applications must include at least one researcher and one shellfish grower acting as co-Principal Investigators, and the proposed work must utilize a co-production of knowledge framework.  

Eligible applicants are United States institutions of higher education; other nonprofits; commercial organizations; state, local, and tribal governments.  

Total funding for this competition includes up to $2,000,000 in federal funds to support 2-6 projects. Each project will be funded at the approximate level of $100,000 – $300,000 per year for 1-3 years.  

Read the formal announcement on Grants.gov NOAA-OAR-SG-2021-2006704.   An informational webinar will be held in November, date to be announced.  

Letters of Intent due December 15, 2020 via email (oar.hq.sg.aquaculture@noaa.gov)   Full proposals due March 16, 2021 via Grants.gov  

This information is also available at https://seagrant.noaa.gov/Funding.  

Resources and forms, including a new application package checklist, are available on the Implementation page of Inside Sea Grant.  

Questions about this competition Funding Opportunity may be sent to Sea Grant (oar.hq.sg.aquaculture@noaa.gov) and/or the Ocean Acidification Program (erica.h.ombres@noaa.gov). Please specify that your question is related to this competition in the subject line.

Notice of Federal Funding Opportunity

The National Sea Grant Office (NSGO) and the Ocean Acidification Program (OAP) are funding a joint competition to fund proposals that seek to establish, continue, and/or expand collaborations between researchers and the shellfish aquaculture industry. Specifically, applications to this competition should utilize new or existing research/industry partnerships to study how ocean and coastal acidification in combination with other stressors impacts shellfish aquaculture. Applications must include at least one researcher and one shellfish grower acting as co-Principal Investigators, and the proposed work must utilize a co-production of knowledge framework. Total funding for this competition includes up to $2,000,000 in federal funds to support 2-6 projects.

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National Aquaculture Association (NAA) – Simpler Application for the Paycheck Protection Program (PPP)

The U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA), in consultation with the Treasury Department, created a simpler loan forgiveness application for Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) loans of $50,000 or less. This action streamlines the PPP forgiveness process to provide financial and administrative relief to America’s smallest businesses while also ensuring sound stewardship of taxpayer dollars.

SBA and Treasury have also eased the burden on PPP lenders, allowing lenders to process forgiveness applications more swiftly.  They began approving PPP forgiveness applications and remitting forgiveness payments to PPP lenders for PPP borrowers on October 2, 2020.  SBA will continue to process all PPP forgiveness applications in an expeditious manner.

Click here to view the simpler loan forgiveness application.

Click here to view the instructions for completing the simpler loan forgiveness application.

Click here to view the Interim Final Rule on the simpler forgiveness process for loans of $50,000 or less.

USDA – What is the Corona Virus Food Assistance Program 2?

The United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) has announced the Corona Virus Food Assistance Program 2 (CFAP 2), designed to provide financial assistance to the agriculture Industry, including both freshwater and marine aquaculture.

Aquaculture eligibility for CFAP 2 includes but not limited to: any species of aquatic organisms grown as food for human consumption, species must be raised by a commercial operator and in water in a controlled environment, eligible sales only include sales of raw commodities grown by the producer.

CFAP 2 is accepting applications from September 21, 2020 to December 11, 2020. To learn more general information please select: farmers.gov/cfap.

For Aquaculture specific information and to locate your USDA Local Service Center select: https://www.farmers.gov/cfap/aquaculture.

Think Outside the Box – Starter, Funding, and Ideas

Farmers_GovDelivery_AllAgency-Urban to Rural

Are you new to farming because of the pandemic? USDA can help you get started – everything from helping you register your farm to getting financial assistance and advice. 

Our team members, based at USDA Service Centers across the country, are hearing from people who are interested in more space and working the land, and we want to let you know we can help.

For more information select: USDA Link