Traditionally fish farming was historically conducted on shore and near-shore. While this may seem convenient, this use of resources competes with tourism, fishing, shipping, and other critical industries. Further, in these constrained spaces, fish farming can impact the environment and produce a low quality product. Fortunately there is a better place to grow fish: the open ocean. Antigua Sustainable Aquaculture will produce juvenile fish on-shore to avoid depleting natural stocks, but grow the fish to full size in large pens, miles off-shore. The open ocean environment combined with Integrated Multi-Trophic Aquaculture (IMTA) and good husbandry practices produces a premium quality product while avoiding the resource conflicts and any measurable environmental impacts. IMTA systems combine an aquaculture species that requires external feeding (e.g. Kampachi and other finfish) with species capable of deriving nutrients from the wastes of the ‘fed’ species. By recycling nutrients that would otherwise be wasted, IMTA systems offer the potential of increased economic gains. Antigua is blessed with outstanding waters quality and can sustainably produce a valuable product with ASA.
There is a large and rapidly growing unfilled global demand for quality seafood. The US seafood trade deficit currently exceeds $11B annually. The EU imports about $40B of seafood annually. China has now become a net importer of seafood. Seafood prices in the US have been rising more than 8% year over year. These trends will only be magnified by the growth in world population and increasing per capita seafood consumption, with growing affluence. Today, overfishing has already removed 90% of large fish from the oceans. If we do not change our relationship with the oceans, by 2048, all wild fish stocks will have collapsed. Thus there is a huge market opportunity for sustainable aquaculture. Aquaculture is a highly complex business that must combine expertise in marine biology with high-end technology to be competitive in industrialized countries. Aquaculture further requires refined operational practices, training to equip workforces, and market distribution channels, just to name a few of the other disciplines involved. Fortunately, Antigua Sustainable Aquaculture can address all of these areas for success in Antigua.
Our approach to aquaculture has no measurable negative effects on the environment. Generally a statement such as this could face intense environmental scrutiny, so we will approach our operations with transparency and rigor foremost in mind. Our solution includes environmental sensors to measure water conditions and collect actual data that can quantifiably show any change. We intend to publish this information online, because we want everyone to be able to see empirically that our commitment goes beyond talk, to results and open transparency. We intend to meet the requirements of the Aquaculture Stewardship Council certification standards shortly after beginning operations. Integrated Multi-Trophic Aquaculture (IMTA) systems also lead to "greener" aquaculture practices through the reduction in waste products in the marine environment – as well as a decreased risk of algal blooms and cloudy water. ASA is truly committed to being environmentally responsible.
Tourism has been the driving economic force in Antigua and real-estate has been a popular investment choice. With the improvement in US-Cuba relations, however, both of these industries will see more competition. Much like the spice export trade, premium aquaculture can be an economic diversifier and growth market for Antigua. Antigua has sound infrastructure and transportation to support international deliveries for export sales. For a GDP of $1.2 Billion, a farm with $150 Million of annual revenues represents over 10% direct growth even before including the economic growth multipliers described below.
The ASA farm will employ around 100 workers. Roughly another 3 “downstream” jobs in processing, packing, logistics and other supporting industries will be created for every direct job. Whereas traditional farms focus mostly on manual labor, our advanced approach includes a much higher percentage of highly compensated roles in biology, technology, and operations. Beyond simply creating jobs, ASA can help raise the average salary in Antigua.
In order to maximize local employment, ASA will leverage various educational and training programs offered by world renown institutions such as Harvard University and the University of Miami’s Rosenstiel School of Marine and Atmospheric Science as well as Virginia Tech’s Seafood Agriculture Research and Extension Center. These institutions provide comprehensive, hands-on curriculums that can equip the workforce of Antigua not just for aquaculture jobs, but even aquaculture leadership positions.
ASA will be growing Kampachi so as to have a product that is local and native, but not competing with the local fishing industry. The primary market sales will be to the Eastern United States through seafood distributors. Ocean farm areas will be far from shore to de-conflict with high value fishing areas. Not only is ASA not a detriment to the fishing industry, but it is a benefit in a number of respects. A higher volume of overall fish being processed will create more competitive local processing and other supporting infrastructure. Aquaculture fish pens tend to act as fish aggregating devices (FAD’s). With careful environmental consideration it may be possible to produce additional local species in the ASA hatchery to re-populate wild ocean stocks. Finally, aquaculture offers career growth for the youth in fishing communities that are facing depleted wild stocks for their generation.
Premium, sustainable seafood can help build the overall reputation of Antigua and help create more interest for potential visitors. ASA intends to make farm tours available for local tour operators. The high quality fish will be made available to local resorts as a way to excite tourists about local eco-friendly products.
Our approach to aquaculture has no measurable negative effects on the environment. Generally a statement such as this could face intense environmental scrutiny, so we will approach our operations with transparency and rigor foremost in mind. Our solution includes environmental sensors to measure water conditions and collect actual data that can quantifiably show any change. We intend to publish this information online, because we want everyone to be able to see empirically that our commitment goes beyond talk, to results and open transparency. We intend to meet the requirements of the Aquaculture Stewardship Council certification standards within two years of starting operations. ASA is truly committed to being environmentally responsible.
The Antigua government is highly supportive of ASA and is investing in the project to take a significant ownership stake in the company. This project is poised to be a significant economic driver for Antigua in a new industry. The pro-business government position will allow ASA to move and develop more efficiently and rapidly. ASA will offer Citizenship by Investment (CIP) participants a buy-back option through the sale of Preferred Redeemable Shares. Finally, Aspen Assurance will offer third party assurances to the participants for their investments. This will preserve the integrity of the Antigua CIP while offering interested CIP participants a higher return opportunity than they can achieve today. We are proud to be able to present an offering that is good for consumers, good for the environment and good for the economy.
The ASA farm will utilize the structure, management, methodology, training, biology and patented technology supplied by the world leaders in aquaculture. The feed technology has been validated to produce primary feed ingredients through independent fish feed formulation trials under the direction of the Agricultural Research Service of the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA), with funding by National Oceanographic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) and by the U.S. Government's Defense Advance Research Project Agency (DARPA), the Office of Naval Research, the State of California, and the USDA. U.S. Government-sponsored and independent commercial studies have been conducted on over 100 different types of feedstock over a six-year period.
The land based hatchery requires recirculation of fresh seawater and one such land based recirculation aquaculture system was awarded TIME Magazine’s 2nd best invention and was only beaten by NASA's new Ares 1 space exploration rocket.
Hurricanes and tsunamis are mitigated by the aquafarm’s cages ability to be lowered 30 meters or more below the surface. At that depth, the effects of a hurricane or tsunami are minimal.
Fish well-being is protected from bacteria, parasites, flukes, pollution and other close to shore issues by the fact that the aquafarm cages are located 6 to 8 miles offshore. Due to the offshore nature and clean waters surrounding Antigua, the fish are free of detectable levels of mercury and PCB’s.
The entire operation from hatchlings to infrastructure is further protected by comprehensive insurance coverage.
The first fish to be raised will be Kampachi, which is a high-value, sashimi-grade fish. Noted New York Times journalist Paul Greenberg has posited Kampachi as a sustainable alternative to Bluefin Tuna. The aquafarm flavor is excellent as proven by Four Seasons Hotels and Resorts’ and other 5 star restaurants’ offering of Kona Kampachi.
Fish grown in deep sea, offshore cages actually taste better than wild caught fish. The fish are well cared for, monitored constantly by remote systems and fed a special, patented pellet feed designed to promote health, flavor and the conversion ratio. Regular feedings and the special formulated pellets as well as the natural offshore environment contribute to the enhanced flavor of the aquafarm raised fish. The Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations’ (FAO). “The State of World Fisheries and Aquaculture 2014” recommends the use of compound pellet feed as opposed to fish feed in aquaculture.
The worldwide demand for fish has been increasing dramatically each year while the fish stocks are being depleted. China is now a net importer of fish. The United States is the world’s largest importing country.
The return to the Economic Citizenship Investor is via dividends on his/her preferred stock in ASA. When ASA declares dividends to common shareholders, it must pay a minimum of 6% to the preferred shareholders. That 6% is a minimum; higher payments can be declared and preferred shareholders enjoying much higher profits. The common shareholders only make money when the preferred shareholders make money and the preferred shareholders have a minimum guarantee that the common shareholders do not. Note that ASA desires to build more farms, with other species such as Mahi Mahi, Red Porgy and Bluefin Tuna, and needs to have “happy investors” and a sterling reputation in the market to achieve that goal.
Contact us to learn about our limited time pricing offer, valid until July 31, 2016.