Overfishing and environmental degradation have taken their toll on the Great Lakes perch fishery. With Lake Erie’s stock of wild yellow perch dwindling, we’re working with partners to develop a unique, land-based aquaculture system to return a sustainable, environmentally responsible supply of this Great Lakes favorite fish to the tables of Midwestern restaurants, homes and community fish fries.

Our Role

While the Indiana Soybean Alliance worked with Bell Aquaculture to develop soy-based feed for farm-raised Bell Perch®, our Freshwater Institute developed a land-based, closed fish farming system that uses just a small amount of water, requires no antibiotics, and captures water waste to fertilize soybean fields. It’s a winning solution,offering economic and conservation benefits, while putting yellow perch back on the menu for the region’s many fish lovers.

Why This Project Matters

Feeding a hungry world requires innovative solutions. Our partnership with Bell Aquaculture demonstrates that sustainable fisheries are possible—even in a place like land-locked central Indiana with no water in sight.

“The world’s appetite for fish is increasing, and global demand has long passed what capture fisheries alone can provide; so aquaculture is challenged to cover the supply gap. Over the last two decades, the Freshwater Institute’s scientific and engineering research has developed fish-farming systems on land that produce healthy, tasty fish and leave water clean.”
—Joe Hankins, Director, Freshwater Institute, The Conservation Fund

Sustainable Fish Success in Indiana


Learn more

Indiana Soybean Alliance
Bell Aquaculture
“Bell Aquaculture: Sustaining Tradition with a Sustainable Fishery”