The potential for aquaculture development in Wallis and Futuna
Monday, 02 November 2009 14:43

Wallis and Futuna have had very limited aquaculture development over the past few decades. In the 1980s, CNEXO (now IFREMER: Institut français de recherche pour l'exploitation de la mer) examined Wallis and Futuna’s potential for aquaculture development, and short-term possibilities were identified, including the culture of exotic bivalves imported as spat. Medium-term possibilities included prawn and milkfish culture to support a pole-and-line fishery. Restocking reefs with trochus was considered as a long-term possibility.

From 2004–2005, experiments on Macrobrachium lar (native fresh water shrimp) were carried out in Futuna by the Service des Affaires Rurales in partnership with SPC. The experiments were aimed at developing an integrated culture of freshwater shrimp in taro ponds.

In September 2007, a delegation from Wallis and Futuna visited SPC and met with fisheries specialists from SPC and the WorldFish Center to learn about the potential for developing aquaculture in their islands. It was decided that SPC would assist Wallis and Futuna in assessing its potential for aquaculture development by reviewing suitable aquaculture species, taking into account human, natural, technical and economical factors. 

A grant provided by the ‘French Pacific Fund’, has, among other things, enabled the undertaking of a strategic analysis of aquaculture potential conducted by a consultant. The SPC Joint Country Strategy (JCS) mission that visited Wallis and Futuna in February 2009 endorsed this consultancy. 

IDEE Aquaculture from France was selected to carry out the review, and a consultant (Jacques Trichereau) visited the territory in June 2009. The consultant undertook the following activities, after visiting both Wallis and Futuna: 

  • Established a list of economically viable commodities for Wallis and Futuna. This list took into account human, natural, technical and economical factors and described their corresponding markets (export and domestic);
  • Identified obstacles and constraints that would hamper the development of aquaculture  in Wallis and Futuna, and proposed solutions to solve them;
  • Prepared a checklist of necessary financial and technical steps to be taken (e.g. capital investment, training) in order to achieve the above; and
  • Reviewed the potential for collaboration and synergies in aquaculture with neighbouring countries and Pacific francophone countries, as well as regional and national institutions.

As a result of the above, the consultant will draft a national strategic aquaculture plan for Wallis and Futuna, which can be used as a roadmap for developing aquaculture in this territory. So far, the consultant has identified two priority commodities: marine shrimp and finfish. Although these commodities would need to be imported as post larvae or fingerlings, both have promising potential in a country where the demand for seafood is high but the supply is currently low, and is mostly imported at high prices. 

Another outcome of the study is that a delegation of officials from Wallis and Futuna will visit New Caledonia’s aquaculture sector where they will make much needed contacts with public and private sector counterparts in the shrimp industry, and also have a close look at two  marine fish project that are currently being developed in New Caledonia. 

For more information, contact:  

Antoine Teitelbaum, SPC Aquaculture Officer  This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it  

or Bruno Mugneret, Service de la Pêche de Wallis et Futunas, This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it