Project Closure and Conclusions
It has been 5 years of intense work divided into two stages. The first phase of INTEGRATE concluded in 2020, and its results included the completion of an exhaustive inventory of technical, socio-economic, environmental and legal aspects of the state of IMTA in the European Atlantic region, the development of new cultivation methods for various organisms, the elaboration of good practice guides for different systems, the definition of the IMTA concept, and the preparation of training material.
At the end of 2021 the opportunity arose to continue this work and, after requesting an extension of the project that was positively evaluated, the INTEGRATE consortium has focused on capitalizing on the results, strengthening technical knowledge and expanding IMTA’s possibilities with new species and new cultivation methods.
New techniques have also been explored to increase IMTA’s commercial potential. Among other activities, the most relevant results were focus on the diversification of cultivated species and simulation models of IMTA productive scenarios in estuaries, highlighting opportunities and species of interest in IMTA aquaculture production.
The experts pointed out that it is necessary to educate consumers about new consumption habits and the benefits of these production systems, and to establish adequate distribution channels to ensure a solid and profitable market. In addition to have an adequate regulatory framework to facilitate the development and implementation process. Eco-labels can also contribute to improving consumer perception of the products generated, and to this end, the life cycle studies carried out will be important allies in establishing concepts of circular economy and sustainability.
All the data of interest of this project can be consulted on the project’s website and on its social networks.