- Animals: fish
- Education and Training: demonstration, extension, focus group, networking, participatory research, technical assistance
- Farm Business Management: new enterprise development, cooperatives, feasibility study, agricultural finance, market study
- Sustainable Communities: infrastructure analysis, new business opportunities, public participation, employment opportunities, social capital, sustainability measures, community development
In accordance with the proposal objectives, Southeast Kentucky Community and Technical College (SKCTC) initiated a series of community focus meetings to discuss the long term potential of aquaculture in the region of Southeast Kentucky. In addition to SKCTC personnel, participants included: cooperative extension agents from Bell and Harlan County, teachers and students from two local high schools, college students, county judge office agents, Kentucky State University personnel, an agent from the KY Department of Agriculture, and local citizens. A core team developed from the meeting conducted one marketing visit to a seafood processor in Louisville, KY, to assess market potential.
In collaboration with this initiative, Leadership Harlan County United (LHCU), a community non-profit leadership organization, adopted sustainable development as its theme for the 2004 and 2005 year-long academies. As a team project, LHCU students provided the public relations announcements to the community and prepared brochures to attendees.
1) Convene meetings to formulate strategic plan for aquaculture. The meetings are ongoing and the plan is still under development.
2)Identify entrepreneurs as potential producers. The success of this goal has been limited. Three entrepreneurs in Harlan and Letcher County have entered a working relationship with SKCTC to learn aquaculture in the business incubator. Each man is developing business plans to form their own independent business after the next year.
3) Explore the feasibility of a cooperatively owned processing facility. The group is exploring the feasibility of forming a partnership with a processing firm in Louisville, KY, to handle all products from the region. Shuckman’s Sesfood Processing has begun promotions of the trout products.
4) Completion of Marketing Study. Students from SKCTC have completed calls to local markets and have concluded that there is a significant demand for aquaculture products.