Abalone Farming

Helpful Information About Abalone Farming

Hard physical labor is not the only aspect of abalone farming.  While it is a substantial amount of hard word, to be successful, one must possess business sense and be familiar with the scientific aspect of the field as well.  Typically one farm will hire a couple of biologists to assist with the scientific portion and then also a few laborers who are responsible for caring for and feeding the abalone.

What Are Abalone?

Abalone are various sizes of sea snails, sea ears, ear-shells, mutton shells and mutton fish.  The meat is used for food while the shells are used in the production of decorative items.  They are also a primary source for mother of pearl.

The larger species have been so exploited due to abalone farming that they are now severely threatened in many locations.  The meat is enjoyed as a delicacy, mainly in Latin America, New Zealand, France and East Asia, primarily Japan, Korea and China.

In Chinese speaking areas, abalone are often part of a banquet and are reserved for special occasions.  In Japan, raw and live abalone are served in awabi sushi or they are eaten salted, steamed, simmered or chopped in soy sauce.

Why Farm Abalone?

With 90 species of abalone worldwide, there is plenty of potential for abalone farming.  The future prices of abalone directly affect supply and demand.  While there have been some ups and downs in a limited range, abalone farming consistently offers a substantial profit.  They continue to be successfully farmed, despite the decrease in market price.

Farm Locations


Abalone Farming Tips And Regulations

Feeding Your Abalones

One of the reasons this is such a profitable business is because the feeding requirements are so minimal.  Abalones feed on marine algae.  In the wild, adults eat algae that is adrift in the ocean's current.  The most preferred types of algae to feed your abalone are giant kelp, feather boa, bull kelp and elk kelp.

Interestingly, the color banding that is present on some abalone shells is the result of specific types of consumed algae.  The juvenile abalone will generally graze on bacterial films, diatoms and coralline algae.  Once they begin to grow, they rely more on drift algae.