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Project: OSTRAQUAL – Enhancing and Promoting the Oyster Aquaculture Quality in Sado and Mira Region

Acronym: OSTRAQUAL
Main Objective: The proposed project is in line with the priority areas of R&I Strategy for Smart Specialization in three priority areas:
agro-food, water and environment and economy of the sea. In the Alentejo region, the estuaries Sado and Mira
Rivers have good natural conditions for aquaculture, particularly oysters. Oysters exist in these estuaries for long
time in natural banks, and during the last years many aquaculture companies installed the production in aquaculture
systems. In these two estuaries, the Portuguese oyster (Crassostrea angulata) is considered an autochthonous oyster,
and the exotic Pacific oysters (Crassostrea gigas) are both produced in aquaculture. The oyster farmers identify the
variability of water quality and the way how the oysters are handled in production strongly influences the quality
of the final product. The production is affected by influent and effluent of water in the tanks and in the same way,
the variations in the quality of water at the annual dynamic characteristics of the estuary play an important role in
the oyster reproduction. Water quality include not only physical and chemical parameters but also other organisms
that can interact with the oysters and affect production with impact on the commercial value of the final product. It
is therefore important to establish an integrated management model of water uses and compatible with the quality
requirements of water for aquaculture companies and promoting sustainable use of space. Thus, the project responds
to biodiversity conservation item and to the sustainable use of space to ensure agro-food product quality, oyster
produced in aquaculture Sado and Mira region, important to ensure the preservation of biodiversity C. angulata the
natural banks. With the introduction of C. gigas in the estuary by oyster farmers, there is need to map the natural oyster
banks and oyster aquaculture and know about the genetic diversity in order to preserve biodiversity and to improve the
quality of their oysters. During the process of georeferencing with GIS, natural oyster banks and oyster aquaculture, a
set of information on water quality, sediment and the health status of oysters to integrate the integrated management
model will be carried out to respond to the priority area of ERA water and environment in item Evaluation, Monitoring
and Ecosystem Protection.The creation of the integrated management model will allow the project to publish a guide of
best practices for aquaculture companies in order to establish protective measures in case of appearance of chemical,
diseases or species in the water that may influence the production and improve the performance of final product, show
other differentiating characteristics of oysters produced elsewhere in the country by nutritional and sensory analysis of
the final product. According to the aquaculture oysters companies it needs to be better studied. Based on the results
of the project will be established a marketing plan and promotion of oysters in the region to stimulate the market and
producers to increase their production capacity. Thus, the project is also aligned with the priority area of EEI Sea
Economy in items 1) Biodiversity and sustainability of species; 2) mapping and monitoring of marine resources; and
3) Sustainable use of marine food resources. The entire project is aligned and in accordance with the Strategic Plan
of the Portuguese Aquaculture for the 2014-2020 period set by the Ministry of Agriculture and Sea.
Reference: 02/SAICT/2016/023838
Funding: FEDER/QREN, FCT
Start Date: 01-01-2018
End Date: 30-09-2019
Team: Vitor Manuel Rodrigues Viegas, José Miguel Costa Dias Pereira
Groups: Instrumentation and Measurements – Lx
Partners: Instituto Politécnico de Setúbal
Local Coordinator: Vitor Manuel Rodrigues Viegas
Links: https://www.researchgate.net/project/OSTRAQUAL-Enhancing-and-promoting-the-oyster-aquaculture-quality-in-Sado-and-Mira-region-Concurso-n-02-SAICT-2016-Projeto-n-023838
Associated Publications