In November 2003, the University of Maryland Biotechnology Institute (UMBI) and the US-Israel Binational Agricultural Research and Development fund (BARD) established a framework for conducting collaborative aquaculture research between UMBI and Israeli scientists – the UMBI/BARD Program. Maryland and Israel each contributed $250,000 to fund the program.
The objective of the program is to promote and competitively support mission-oriented collaborative aquaculture research and development activities, conducted jointly by UMBI and Israeli scientists, that will be of mutual benefit by providing solutions to mutual aquaculture problems and open new horizon to advancing aquaculture in both Maryland and Israel.
This fund will provide grants of 1-3 years with a maximum total budget (to all parties) of $75,000 to $100,000/year, to be equally divided between the UMBI and Israeli scientists. Research will focus on:
- Search and discovery of novel marine natural products and pharmaceuticals produced by marine organisms
- Development and improvement of seed production and hatchery technologies (reproduction and early life stages) in finfish and shellfish of economic interest to Maryland and Israel.
- Development of high efficiency and environmentally compatible aquaculture diets.
- Development of environmentally-compatible, recirculated aquaculture systems for species of economic interest to Israel and Maryland.
- Controlling fish diseases in recirculated, dense aquaculture systems.
- Development of new products for aquaculture, including ornamental fish.