Title: An investigation of public awareness and perception of marine aquaculture in South Africa coastal communities: a pilot study in the Hermanus community

Final project
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public awareness; marine aquaculture; South Africa;


Marine aquaculture is in its infant stage in South Africa and its development is of priority to the government. Involvement of the public in the development of the sector is essential and a holistic approach to its management is crucial. This study looked at public awareness of marine aquaculture and how it is perceived. The public perception in terms of environmental and socio-economic impact was assessed. Hermanus community was used as a pilot site. A survey was conducted, which included a variety of groups that represent different interests. The outcomes of the study indicated that majority of participants are aware of marine aquaculture and they perceive it to have a positive impact. It is perceived that the negative environmental impacts are exceeded by the positive socio-economic impacts. For the full implementation of the study, it is recommended that focus should be placed on sub-sector perception and awareness. Focus of the awareness programmes should be on young people as they demonstrated to be less aware of marine aquaculture. In addition, promotion of the sector should be in areas where there is less marine aquaculture activities.

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