The Chennai-based VGP Marine Kingdom, which operates a mini oceanarium, has signed an MoU with the NBFGR to market the shrimps. The NBFGR marine scientists are also exploring the option of exporting the ornamental shrimps that are high in demand.
According to NBFGR sources, the cost of the shrimp per pair starts from Rs 600 to Rs 800. The export value of the new ornamental shrimp variety per pair is expected to fetch around 22 to 25 US dollars when exported. Based on the MoU, the marine park will directly procure the captive-raised shrimps from the beneficiaries, make a display at their souvenir shop attached with the oceanarium in Chennai and market the same.
According to Dr Kuldeep Kumar Lal, director, NBFGR, the institute working with the fish genetic resources of the country for intellectual property protection and sustainable utilisation has successfully established a germplasm resource centre for marine ornamental invertebrates at Agatti Island, Lakshadweep. The first of its kind breeding of Thor Hainanensis succeeded and the MoU will help to uplift the living standard of the islanders and also prevent the overexploitation of indigenous ornamental shrimps from the wild.
This effort has paved way for conservation of the indigenous species, Lal explained.