"The Blue Revolution to Feed the World" is the theme behind World Aquaculture 2009, scheduled for May 25-29 at the new, world-class World Trade Center in Veracruz, Mexico.

According to the Food and Agriculture Organisation (FAO), aquaculture in Mexico has served as a valuable alternative for strengthening the food supply within the country and could contribute to global food security.

Aquaculture in Mexico has its roots in development as a complementary activity for support of rural communities and as a means to increase consumption of animal protein and improve nutritional levels of local populations, according to the agency.

World Aquaculture 2009 will focus not only on aquaculture in Mexico but on the industry worldwide. The event will include commercial exhibits, a full conference programme on a host of aquaculture topics and tours of the local aquaculture industry, as well as an opportunity to take in local culture and attractions. In addition to being the annual event for the World Aquaculture Society (WAS), it will serve as the annual international conference and exposition of Latin American and Caribbean Chapter, WAS.

New revolution

The conference's choice of the "Blue Revolution" as its core focus harkens back to the 1940s and what became known as the first Green Revolution, when a joint venture between the Rockefeller Foundation and the Mexican Ministry of Agriculture got involved in genetic research, plant pathology, entomology, agronomy, soil science and cereal technology. The goal of the project, directed by Dr Norman Borlaug, was to boost the production of wheat around the world. As a result of this programme, wheat yields nearly doubled in countries such as Mexico, Pakistan and India between 1965 and 1970. These collective increases in yields have been labelled as the Green Revolution.

World Aquaculture 2009 will take place in Veracruz, Mexico, 40 years after Borlaug's research programme, showing that the aquaculture industry offers a great opportunity to develop a new "Blue Revolution" to feed the world. Organisers invite participants to join together for a journey to the world of aquaculture science and technology, to explore the whole range of possibilities and make the new Blue Revolution possible.

The conference will include three plenary presentations:

Industry sessions will take place throughout the conference, with speakers addressing the concerns of the industry. There will also be a special "Farmers Day," with presentations on topics of interest to aquaculture farmers.

Veracruz is the main port and the main tourist beach destination within Mexico. Located on the Gulf of Mexico, the State of Veracruz boasts a variety of landscapes. For the full programme and registration information, visit www.was.org.