aqua·​cul·​ture ˈä-kwə-ˌkəl-chər How to pronounce aquaculture (audio)
variants or less commonly aquiculture
: the cultivation of aquatic organisms (such as fish or shellfish) especially for food
aquacultural adjective
aquaculture transitive verb
aquaculturist noun

Did you know?

For most of the modern history of aquaculture, only costly fish and shellfish like salmon and shrimp were harvested. But new technologies are allowing cheaper and more efficient cultivation of fish for food, and such common fish as cod are now being farmed. Seaweeds and other algae are also being grown--for food (mostly in Asia), cattle feed, fertilizer, and experimentally as a source of energy. Aquaculture is now the world's fastest-growing form of food production.

Examples of aquaculture in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web The project is not for aquaculture, an industry that has increased salinity problems amid the labyrinth of ponds and channels of Mongla, but so residents can collect enough rainwater for household cleaning. Melanie Stetson Freeman, The Christian Science Monitor, 9 Nov. 2023 For this event, the National Museum of American History hosts two days of book signings, cooking demos and panel discussions on everything from aquaculture to Indigenous recipes. Chris Kelly, Washington Post, 2 Nov. 2023 When completed, the plant will be one of the first large-scale operation of its type, and produce insect proteins and lipids for use in the pet food, aquaculture and livestock industries, according to the companies. John Magsam, Arkansas Online, 18 Oct. 2023 Staff members teach students at the New York Harbor School, a public high school on Governors Island, about aquaculture, ocean engineering and marine policy. Callie Holtermann, New York Times, 20 Sep. 2023 Greg Lutz of Louisiana State University, who has been researching the role of genetics in aquaculture for decades, told MIT Technology. al, 5 Feb. 2023 The tiny size and sleepy nature of Cedar Key belies its outsize role in Florida’s aquaculture industry. Stephanie Castellano, The Christian Science Monitor, 1 Sep. 2023 The town is the only coastal community in Florida where farming is the main economic driver — in this case, aquaculture from clams and oysters, mostly — rather than tourism. Lori Rozsa, Washington Post, 31 Aug. 2023 Its main businesses are tourism and aquaculture – in particular clams. Eric Levenson, CNN, 31 Aug. 2023 See More

These examples are programmatically compiled from various online sources to illustrate current usage of the word 'aquaculture.' Any opinions expressed in the examples do not represent those of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback about these examples.

Word History


Latin aqua + English -culture (as in agriculture)

First Known Use

1864, in the meaning defined above

Time Traveler
The first known use of aquaculture was in 1864

Dictionary Entries Near aquaculture

Cite this Entry

“Aquaculture.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 30 Nov. 2023.

Kids Definition


aqua·​cul·​ture ˈak-wə-ˌkəl-ˌchər How to pronounce aquaculture (audio)
: the cultivation of living things (as fish or shellfish) naturally occurring in water
aquaculturist noun
Last Updated: - Updated example sentences
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