Fishery and Mariculture
History of mariculture in Zadar County
Zadar County has a long tradition of marine fish and shellfish farming, as is the case with the whole of Dalmatia. First documented activities of the farming of marine organisms (fish and shellfish) began in the Roman period.
First Dalmatian fish ponds for fish farming date back to the 1st century. Roman landowners, colonialists and deserving veterans frequently embellished their luxurious summerhouses with fish ponds. In the Middle Ages, fish and oyster farming developed in the proximity of the coastal monasteries. Feudal landowners soon joined this trend and for centuries onward they appropriated and exploited top locations for fish and shellfish farming. Fish pools and ponds were used for the farming of: mullets, gilthead sea breams, sea basses and eels.
Fishermen of Zadar County - the pioneers of mariculture
The project of cage farming of tuna began in the area of Zadar at the end of 1995, upon the initiative of a handful of emigrants from the town of Kali on the island of Ugljan. Because of the increased demand for tuna on the global and, in particular, on the Japanese market and its high prices, tuna fishing quotas were cut, at first in the southern hemisphere and then in our country too.
Kali Tuna was founded at the end of 1995. It was the first company in this part of the Mediterranean to start with tuna farming. Since then, tuna business has become extremely important for Croatian mariculture and is one of the most successful Croatian exporting projects. Kali Tuna initiated its experimental production in 1996 in its tuna farm along the island of Iž. During the first year of production it succeeded in farming and marketing 39 tons of tuna on the Japanese market. Several other companies followed the footsteps of Kali Tuna and started to farm tuna.
Zadar County is the most successful Adriatic county as regards the production and export in the sector of mariculture. However, there are still significant development opportunities in this area.
The advantages of mariculture in Zadar County are the proximity to the largest markets, especially the Italian market, sea cleanliness and quality and the perception of high quality fish from the Adriatic that is pertinent to foreign markets. It is important to emphasize that Croatia is the only country in Europe with juvenile tuna farms; other countries only deal with tuna fattening.
The indentedness of the coastline and clean environment make the coastal area of RC and Zadar County a unique location in the whole of Mediterranean area. The coastline consists of numerous technologically beneficial and quiet bays, coves and channels suitable for mariculture. There is a whole range of sites adequate for different types of farming of marine organisms.
The climate and oceanographic conditions favour rapid and successful fish and shellfish reproduction. The coastal area of Zadar County is still unpolluted and clean, which is a basic precondition for farming. According to the “Study of Use and Protection of the Sea and Underwater Area in Zadar County” of 2003 and in line with the accepted classification, environmental conditions of the sea in the coastal area of Zadar are of top category, which quality and description-wise implies: oligotrophic sea, of blue colour, sufficiently oxygen-saturated and more than 10 m of transparency.
Croatia, and in particular its mariculture in Zadar County, has often played a role of a pioneer in the Mediterranean area. This is still very much reflected in the existing experience and accumulated knowledge and in trained, professional and scientific staff.
The existing scientific institutions are well experienced and are fully able to follow and assist the sustainable development of this activity.
In high-income countries and in RC there is a growing trend of turning towards healthy and highly nutritional food where sea products play a significant role. Meat consumption has decreased and fish is more and more introduced into modern diet. Concurrently, the catch offer is reduced because of the pressure exerted on natural resources, which made it imperative to put fishing under stricter and more organized control.
It is clear that the mariculture market keeps increasing and becoming more demanding. Global and local consumption continues to grow. Today, the per capita consumption in Croatia is between eight and nine kilograms and the EU average is around 20 kilograms.
The momentum the tourism sector is undergoing is the basis for continuing opening of the local market. The growth of the sector of tourism in the region has strengthened the demand for mariculture products. Mariculture is extremely compatible with tourism and fishery, which are both traditional activities of the coastal area.
Fishery is expected to decrease and aquaculture production is expected to increase in both Europe and some other regions of the world. However, further growth in the European Union and in North European countries will most probably be impeded by space limitations, competition for water sources, rigid environmental measures and the development of market and low-cost import from non-European countries.
Unlike North European countries, where the available coastal area is one of the main limiting factors, Croatia boasts significant opportunities for the development of fish and shellfish farming. Zadar County has all the natural preconditions and available locations for fish and shellfish farms and these have also been envisaged in the general spatial planning.
The total farming area under concession covers 1.652.281,60 m2 the spatial plan of Zadar County is available on the following web site http://www.zadarska-zupanija.hr/pp/karte/karte/32.jpg
Cromaris is a company dedicated to breeding, selling and processing of fish. Their knowledge and expertise are inherited from the long experience of the greatest domestic names in mariculture and fish breeding, which have recently merged under the name of Cromaris.
Trg tri bunara 5, 23000 Zadar
Tel: +385 (0)23 254 960
Fax: +385 (0)23 250 883
The "Mardešić" factory was founded in 1905, and fish production began in 1907. Considering that the factory is located in Sali on Dugi otok for more than 100 years it represents the main source of income for the local people and those of surrounding islands. Nowadays the factory produces canned fish, mostly sardines, anchovies, tunas and mackerels.
Sali bb, 23281 Sali, Dugi Otok
Tel: +385 (0)23 377 029
Fax: +385 (0)23 377 064
Dalmar p.l.c. - open sea farming
Their fish farms are located near the marine park of the wonderful Incoronate Islands: the fish swim in open sea and feed in an environment made favourable by the uncontaminated waters of the Croatian archipelago. Each fish is marked with a small flag that attests the origin and quality obtained by controls effectuated during the entire farming cycle. The packaging of the product is carried out using the most advanced technology for the selection, weighing and distribution of the fish, thereby guaranteeing a high and constant qualitative standard over a period of time.
Obala Kralja Petra Kresimira IV br. 64, 23211 Pakoštane
Tel / Fax: +385 (0)23 381 978
Jadran tuna Ltd.
Established in year 1997, Jadran tuna is following world's technology and market trends, and developing constantly. Since most of their production is quality tuna meat for Japan market (used in sushi and sashimi), they are using technology chosen and controlled by their clients in order to fulfil client's requirements. Today, they have 13 fishing ships, 2 towboats, refrigerator ship and several ships and boats used for farming and various interventions.
Vukovarska 86, 23210 Biograd na Moru
Tel: +385 (0)23 385 355
Fax: +385 (0)23 385 359
Kali Tuna Ltd.
Kali Tuna farms Atlantic Bluefin Tuna in the calm waters of the Adriatic Ocean. The companies core product is sashimi grade tuna. Kali Tuna seeks to produce and distribute healthy seafood in an economical, efficient and environmentally friendly manner. The company is located in the archipelago of Zadar, along Croatia’s Central Adriatic coast.
Put Vele Luke bb, 23 272 Kali
Tel: +385 (0)23 28 28 00
Fax: +385 (0)23 28 28 10
Zadar-tuna is a company for production and trade, established December 17, 2004. Since May 2, 2008. Zadar Tuna takes over tuna farming and trade from AT together with the concession on maritime demense «Pod Mrđinom» on Ugljan Island, as well as the associated equipment. Yearly planed farming is 230 tons.
Kolegina ulica b.b., 23272 Kali
Vatroslava Linsinskog 12b, 23000 Zadar
Tel: +385 (0)23 332 082
Fax: + 385 (0)23 331 834
The factory has been in fish salting since 2000 and under the name Ostrea since 2003. At the peek of the season the factory employs over 300 workers. Having a yearly production of 3500 tons today, Ostrea is the biggest producer of salted anchovies in Europe.
Benkovačke bojne 17, 23420 Benkovac
Tel: + 385 (0)23 682 040
Fax: + 385 (0)23 682 012
Adria Zadar 1
Gaženička 32, 23000 Zadar
Tel: + 385 (0)23 209 900
Fax: + 385 (0)23 342 308