MAHOP project

Development of technology, knowledge transfer and innovation infrastructure supporting the breeding and production of fish spices significant from angling and fish farming perspective (RESEARCHFISH)

Project Beneficiary:

Consortium leader: Szent István University

Consortium members: University of Debrecen, National Centre for Biodiversity and Gene Conservation, Centre for Agricultural Research


Hungarian aquaculture is still characterized by the extensive, carp-centric pond production. The intensity and volume of the national fish production is low. Although there are relatively few intensive and recirculating aquaculture system operating in Hungary, the role of the sector in supplying fish products to Hungary is expected to increase in the future. Intensive fish farming in a closed system under controlled conditions is much more able to meet consumer expectations regarding food safety and food quality, in addition, sustainability aspects are more prevalent in modern recirculation systems. An additional advantage of intensive fish production is that today the consumer market and trade require continuous, consistent quality production and transportation of fish. It’s can only be ensured through the use of intensive technologies. However, in the case of production changes introduced during the breeding of a given fish species or the introduction of a new fish species, the occurrence of previously undetected diseases or the spread of previously well-controlled diseases must be expected.


For the above reasons, the consortium of the RESEARCHFISH, is intend in corporation (Szent István University, Debrecen University, National Centre for Biodiversity and Gene Conservation, Centre for Agricultural Research) aims at renewing the intensive production of six endemic fish species and, through this, intensive fish farming. One of the native fish species, which can be considered as new in Hungarian intensive fish farming is the perch. Based on our preliminary experience, it can be said that with the further development of artificial and off-season reproduction, as well as with the sustainable (low fishmeal and fish oil content) feeding technology, it is possible to integrate it into the intensive fish farming system.


Hungarian fish management has changed significantly due to the changes in legislation and the change in management approach in the recent years. Angling in natural waters has been given priority over commercial fishing, so the demand for population in these waters has also changed. There has been an increase in demand for indigenous carp species that are important for anglers (Asp, Ide, Sneep, Chub, Crucian carp, Tinca). Although we have preliminary results regarding the breeding of these species, this technology unfortunately does not work profitably in the Hungarian carp-centric production structure. However, market demands and the development of recirculation technology have created the opportunity for these species to be produced economically in the small-scale, low-cost, intensive water recycling systems established next to the hatcheries. However, more details need to be clarified to spread this technology. Thus, it is necessary to increase the efficiency of breeding technology, to develop the technical details of intensive pre-rearing and fingerling rearing, to reveal the genetic background and to study the pathogens that potentially endanger the fish species involved in the project.


In order to achieve the above mentioned goals, in addition to the development of the breeding technology of the given species, it is also necessary to adapt the technical background. For this reason, the members of the consortium are exploring different methods of wastewater treatment (aquaponics, multitrophic systems, chemical precipitation of ammonium, nitrate and phosphorus) and the possibilities of developing floating cage fish farming. Finally, an important element of the project is dissemination, so that the results achieved reach the end users, fish farmers as quickly as possible.


During the project implementation, a modern Knowledge and Technology Transfer Center (which includes, among others, a Knowledge Transfer Showroom, a molecular biology laboratory and several research demonstration rooms) would be created, suitable for the consortium members to the transfer of technological elements and practice-oriented knowledge developed during the implementation of the project (Knowledge sharing).





Presentations of project closing event:

Presentation - Szent István University 1.
Presentation - ATK-AOTI
Presentation - NBGK-HGI
Presentation - University of Debrecen

Presentation - Szent István University 2.


Press release