Importance of the brine shrimp – From the economic point of view, the most critical value of the Brine Shrimp comes from the performance of their Cysts within the aquaculture industry, when used as a source of nutrition for sea finfish and shrimp, in their larval stages.
Besides the high content protein and the right essential fatty acids and nutrients, it is still not clear until today why the Cyst of this crustacean is so critical, but the fact is that hatcheries of those two types of species cannot reach profitable levels of production without using Brine Cysts.
Concerned with this fact, biotechnology has made several attempts to find nutritional substitutes, mainly by enriching alternatives species (rotifers and copepods), or artificially encapsulating its major nutritional elements. Both processes have shown positives results but their production costs can’t compete with the naturally produced Brine Shrimp Cysts.
Regarding sales of brine shrimp cysts (artemia salina) market, the project relies on a solid demand of the local aquaculture industry which is very well established in Ecuador since 1977. The proponents of Artemia Pilot Project (APP) have an extensive experience dealing with the sales and distribution of this product.
APP’s strategic plan for producing brine shrimp is not to commercialize the adult shrimp which is intended to become the main feed for the fish production. The plan is to sell their cysts which have a very high price in the market. In fact, after the second production year –effectively, on the third year-, SSOP expect the net income of the brine production to reach roughly 10% of the total income.