An estimated 1,500 aquaculture operators are engaged in this industry, ranging from small-scale family enterprises to large corporations. The smaller producers are responsible for the majority of the country’s production but they mainly produce for the domestic market as their traceability and quality standards are not always sufficient.
Most farmers acquire PL’s from one of the 25 the Bureau of Fisheryies and Aquatic Resources (BFAR) approved hatcheries that are based throughout the country. These PL’s are immediately stocked in grow-out ponds as the use of nursery ponds tend to increase mortality. Weekly care consists of promoting algae growth in the ponds by using chemical fertilizers. In most polyculture systems the shrimp eats the excess feeds and waste produced by the fish (in most cases milkfish) and few shrimp feeds are used. Monoculture farms tend to feed pellet feeds 3 to 4 times a week. If needed, partial water exchanges are done using tidal currents. In most cases no active aeration systems are used. Depending on the targeted harvesting size and the amount of feed used, Penaeus monodon remain in the grow-out ponds for 5 to 6 months. Typically they are harvested at 30 – 40 gram.