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Farah, Fardosa and Ndum, Rita, 2022. Creating, delivering, and capturing value through sustainability : an exploratory study on the early development of commercial aquaponics in Sweden. Second cycle, A2E. Uppsala: SLU, Dept. of Economics



Aquaculture is one of the fastest-growing food sectors in the world, and the increasing world population is said to only increase the need for more seafood. However, the sustainability of the aquaculture has been questioned recently and measures have been taken to overcome and internalize the negative externalities. These externalities include eutrophication of water bodies, the various impact of wildlife, disease transfer, and water source pollution. With the rising concerns of the open cage aquacultural systems, there has been rising interest in the Recirculating aquaculture systems (RAS) which use a closely controlled environment to grow fish.

One example of this is aquaponics which is defined as an integrated system where two elements of recirculating aquaculture and hydroponics are combined. This system of integration allows some of the shortcomings of aquaculture and hydroponics to be addressed promising to be a sustainable food production method. However, research within the area of aquaponics is mostly focusing on technical perspectives such as the engineering aspect as well as the microbiology. There are few existing commercial aquaponics businesses known in Sweden and very little knowledge about how the aquaponic business model is developed in practice.

The aim of this research is therefore to explore the early development business model of aquaponics in Sweden and how it can be conceptualized as a sustainable business model. A qualitative method was chosen to collect the data where the unit of analysis is individual units. The people that are used as the unit of analysis are individuals with expertise in the field either from research or practice as well as policies that govern this area.

This explorative study of aquaponics found aquaponics to be a promising innovation for sustainable food production and a learning curve in the process of sustainability. However, its growth in Sweden is underdeveloped and a paradox. Understanding this weakness in the growth of aquaponics can help inform policymakers and contributes to the uptake of aquaponics in Sweden. Understanding the BMI of aquaponics has revealed economic viability as a central pillar in the development of innovations for sustainability and the foundation to the development of environmental and social sustainability. These finding questions the balance in importance shown in the literature of the three pillars of sustainability.

Main title:Creating, delivering, and capturing value through sustainability
Subtitle:an exploratory study on the early development of commercial aquaponics in Sweden
Authors:Farah, Fardosa and Ndum, Rita
Supervisor:Langendahl, Per-Anders
Examiner:Ferguson, Richard
Series:Examensarbete / SLU, Institutionen för ekonomi
Volume/Sequential designation:1412
Year of Publication:2022
Level and depth descriptor:Second cycle, A2E
Student's programme affiliation:NM031 Agricultural Economics and Management - Master's Programme, 120.0hp
Supervising department:(NL, NJ) > Dept. of Economics
Keywords:aquaponics, business model, business model innovation, sustainability, sustainable innovation, sustainable business model innovation, aquaculture, recirculating aquaculture system
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Subject. Use of subject categories until 2023-04-30.:Cropping patterns and systems
Aquaculture production
Economics and management
Deposited On:02 Mar 2022 07:04
Metadata Last Modified:03 Mar 2022 02:02

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