How to Open a Mussel Farm Business

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Mussel meat is a great dietary product available at affordable prices. There is a huge potential for making a great profit in the mussel farming business because mussel meat has grown in demand for domestic as well as commercial purposes. You would be able to break even very soon and generate profits, probably, in your second year of business operations. It is actually a great business opportunity for entrepreneurs living near coastal areas.

Pros in business

There are many advantages, entrepreneurs, like you, are assured to enjoy in operating a Mussel farm business, such as follows;

  • Easy availability of a significant length of coastline for mussel fishery around regions like India, Japan, the United States, etc.
  • Presence of natural forage base for breeding of mussels.
  • Capital requirements are needed when you decide to launch a farm.
  • Continuity of food production.
  • Harvesting can be carried out at almost any time.
  • A small amount of money is required for equipment.
  • Product demand for mussels exceeds supply.

Types of mussels

There is a variety of mussels available for breeding almost in every country. The following five types of mussels are very common in nations like China, the USA, Italy, etc.

Plain mussels – A most common type of mussels people breed in countries like the USA, China, Italy, India, etc. Important features of plain mussels;

  • Desirable water temperature required around 10°C-20°C.
  • Desirable water salinity needs to be between 15-30%.
  • Habitat depth is up to 50 meters.
  • 12cm of length for shell size.
  • Breedable all year round.

The Mediterranean – mostly found in countries like Japan, and the Mediterranean basins. Important features are;

  • 13cm maximum sink size
  • Marine waters suitable for habitat
  • Water temperature 25°C
  • Water salinity 18%
  • Habitable depth up to 20 meters

Korean mussels– Common in and around Korean coastal areas. Important features are;

  • Habitable waters – marine
  • Temperature – 25°C
  • The salinity of water – up to 35%
  • Thrive at 35 meters deep in water.

Pacific mussels – People breed Pacific mussels mostly in sea areas of Japan, and North Korea. Important characteristics are;

  • Habitable waters –
  • Feasible water temperatures – 12°C
  • The salinity of water – 30%

Gray mussels – Habitable in the shallow water of Japan, 20cm shell length, shell mass around 1.6 kilograms.

Methods of breeding

Breeding mussels is generally a simple process, however, it is impossible to breed them without sea or coastal areas. Various methods for breeding mussels have been developed over time, and the following are some of the common methods in practice worldwide.

Raft culture – This is the most common method. Weights are used to keep the rafts afloat on the water. The cargo is protected beneath the raft. A rope is hung from it, with another load at the other end. Feel free to use at least 500 ropes to construct a 5×5 m raft. Make a shallow mark on the raft. Starting in April, Mytilid Larvae settle on top of the ropes, and under normal conditions, one raft can produce 45 tonnes of mussels per year.

Ground breeding- The simplest and most cost-effective method. Mytilides are extracted from the ground using specialized dredges. One dredge holds approximately 450 kg of mussels. Cultivation takes place in a pre-prepared area on the shallows. They provide growing plots measuring 200×500 m. Planting density is 7 kg/sqm, and they are grown for approximately 2 years.

Busho breeding – The method is simple: in shallow water with ebbs and flows, logs 5 m high and 40 cm in diameter are driven into the sand. Mytilid larvae settle on the logs in April and May. To leave free, the bottom of the logs are intertwined with tree branches. Beginning in June, mussels are removed from the logs and placed in special bags attached to the logs closer to the shore. They will remain there until they reach commercial size.