INVEST IN THE
L ib erta
y O rd e n
COLOMBIA’S GREAT OPPORTUNITIES IN
THE AQUACULTURE SECTOR
During the 90’s, Colombia’s shrimp cultivation industry reached peak levels, pushing the country into the world’s spotlight as shrimp
producer and exporter. Colombia has increased both the productivity levels of fish breeding and its fish culture areas. Fish breeding
production focuses mostly on tilapia, trout, and cachama.
In 2012, shrimp production in the country reached 8,500 tons, mainly in the states of Sucre (65%), Bolivar (32%), and Nariño (5%).
(Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development).
Colombia’s fish production has shown a steady growth in the last 10 years, rising from 28,956 tons in 2002 to 80,609 tons in 2012,
with a total increase of 278%. (Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development).
2000-2012 AQUACULTURE PRODUCTION (THOUSANDS OF TONS)
SOURCE: MINISTRY OF AGRICULTURE AND RURAL DEVELOPMENT.
SHRIMP CULTIVATION INDUSTRY
• The Productive Transformation Program (PTP) is an alliance
between the public and private sectors created by the
Ministry of Trade, Industry and Tourism to drive productivity
and competitiveness in the aquaculture sector, aiming to
boost its exporting potential through better coordination
between the public and private sectors.
• Colombian shrimp cultivation is currently focused on the
departments of Sucre, Bolivar, and Nariño, with a total
share of 99%, although departments like Cordoba also
have installed infrastructure.
• The average seawater temperature along the Colombian
Atlantic coastline (81-90°F) is perfect for the production
of white shrimp, as it stymies the spread of the white spot
syndrome virus (WSSV). Although temperatures along the
Pacific Coastline are lower, virus incidence remains low
thanks to management systems and seeds.
• Colombia’s shrimp cultivation blends together intensive
and extensive production models, with tanks designed to
supply an extensive production system according to the
Ecuadorian model, and production was placed next higher
density production systems.
The three main species produced in Colombia
are tilapia (red and silver), cachama, and trout,
representing approximately 96% of the country’s
The main tilapia production areas are Huila, Meta,
Santander, Cordoba, Tolima, Caqueta, Antioquia,
and Valle del Cauca.
Cachama is mainly produced in the departments
of Antioquia, Meta, Santander, Cordoba, Tolima,
Caqueta, and Valle del Cauca.
Trout production is focused on Antioquia, Boyaca,
and Cundinamarca. This production has extended
into Cauca, Coffee Triangle, Nariño, Santander,
and Norte de Santander.
Reasons to Invest in Colombia’s
Geographical Location: The area is free from hurricanes and typhoons and is close to the
main consumption hubs.
Lack of Seasons: Weather and water temperature are fairly constant, making production
possible all year round.
International Recognition: Stemming from the sector’s wide experience in foreign markets,
its high-quality products, qualified expert personnel, and the genetic enhancement program.
Available Lands: Aquaculture regions include an estimated area of 370,658 acres available
Colombian Aquaculture Research Center: The Colombian Aquaculture Research Center
(Centro de Investigacion de la Acuicultura en Colombia, CENIACUA) has produced a
scientific and technological body of knowledge in favor of the shrimp cultivation industry.
Aquaculture Sector Investment Opportunities
Reactivation of culture areas
and installed infraestructure
for shrimp cultivation in the
Caribbean and Pacific coastlines,
which have proved to be
productive and cost-effective.
Mariculture projects, mainly along the Caribbean
coastline, with perfect climatic conditions, water
temperature, and other factors well-suited for this
kind of initiatives and which, thanks to Colombia’s
strategic location, enjoy competitive advantages to
reach foreign markets, including the U.S.
Strategic alliances with local fish farmers who
want to improve their production capabilities
and increase or build manufacturing plants to
meet the domestic demands and have surplus
stock for exportation of both fresh and
• Huila is the department with the greatest number of piscicultural
companies in the country, with nearly 25% of the total. Huila is followed
by Bogota D.C.1 and Valle del Cauca, each with a 20% share. Other
piscicultural companies are located in departments like Meta, Bolivar,
Risaralda, Antioquia, Cauca, Boyaca, and Cundinamarca.
• Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development: It develops,
manages, and evaluates the policies that promote competitive, fair,
and sustainable development of agricultural, forestry, fishing, and rural
development procedures applying decentralization, agreement, and
participation criteria with the purpose of improving the quality of life of
• As for shrimp farming companies, over 50% of the business comes
from the department of Nariño. In the Caribbean Coast, the Atlantico
department hosts the largest number of companies with nearly 33%
share, while Bolivar is home to 10%.2
el diviso Ltda.
Bogota - Cundinamarca
Dispez Rio y Mar S.A.
Gómez Mejia & Cia.
Trucha Surala S.A.S.
Valle del Cauca
Gran Langostino S.A.S.
Bahia Cupica Ltda.
Agromarina Tumaco S.A.
• The Productive Transformation Program (PTP): is an alliance between
the public and private sectors driving productivity and competitiveness
in industries with high exporting potential through better coordination
• Proexport: is the Government office in charge of attracting foreign
investment, supporting nontraditional exports, and promoting the
country as an international tourism destination.
• AUNAP: The National Authority for Aquaculture and Fisheries is the
entity in charge of exercising the planning, research, management,
promotion, regulation, registration, information, inspection, monitoring
and control of fishing and aquaculture activities.
• The CENIACUA: develops scientific and technological knowledge
through the use of human, material, and economic resources in the
country and thanks to the participation of the sector’s entrepreneurs
to improve productivity and sustainable development in Colombia’s
Piscicola New York S.A.
y comercial 3C.
Babillos fish S.A.
Source: BPR Benchmark.
1. Most companies have their business address registered in Bogota D.C., but their production facilities are not necessarily located in this region.
2. Most companies have their business address registered in Atlantico, but their production facilities are not necessarily located in this region.