Sunday, March 4, 2018

05/03/2018: Aquafeed initiative to boost East African aquaculture market

by Shem Oirere, Journalist

Countries in East Africa are experiencing a surge in demand for fish amid declining local production volumes hence creating opportunities for farmed fish ventures that in turn require investment in production of quality fish feeds in the short, medium and long term

Kenya, Tanzania, Rwanda, Uganda and Burundi continue to record deficits in locally produced fish forcing the countries to rely on imports either among themselves or from overseas markets such as China, Netherlands, Germany and Belgium to meet the domestic supply needs.

But more importantly these countries have either jointly or separately launched initiatives to promote fish farming to boost the unexploited fish farming potential and diminishing fresh water and marine fish resources creating more investment opportunities for private sector fish feeds producers in a region where consistency and quality of the products remains a major challenge.

Although production of farmed fish in Kenya dropped to 14,952 tonnes in 2016 down from the 18,656 tonnes recorded in 2015, a public private partnership between Kenya and the Netherlands has resulted in the launch of the first aqua feed manufacturing plant in the country’s capital Nairobi, raising the hopes of current and potential fish farmers of getting consistent supply of quality fish feeds.

The new 5,000-ton capacity extruded floating fish feed factory that was opened last year has been developed by Kenyan-based Unga Holdings Ltd, which is a holding company with majority stake in enterprises engaged in the production and marketing of human nutrition, animal nutrition and animal health products, in partnership with US-based Seaboard Corporation.

It is the first facility of such level of quality in East Africa that will produce the much needed high-quality floating fish feeds, the single most important impediment to the growth of the aquaculture (fish farming) sector in the region according to Larive International, which partnered with Lattice Consulting in providing consultancy in the development of the project.

The fish feed venture was supported by FoodTechAfrica, a Dutch public private partnership that is striving to improve food security in East Africa through initiating of fully integrated fish farming value chain in the region.

Read the full article, HERE.

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