Government devotes US$2m for genetic improvement of fish in Zambia

ZAMBIA – The government through the Zambia Aquaculture Enterprise Development Project (ZAEDP) has pumped in US$2 million in fish genetic improvement to boost the fishing industry in Zambia.

According to Lusaka Times, the programme will involve research work at the National Aquaculture Research Development Centre (NARDC) with a goal to enhance the quality and quantity of fish and increase fish production and productivity.

Fisheries and Livestock Permanent Secretary David Shamulenge said NARDC will be transformed into a regional research center of Excellency for the SADC community and Africa in aquaculture production.

NARDC will also introduce the certification of fingerlings and fish products for fish farmers to access quality fingerlings and curb curtails in the fisheries sector that are causing unnecessary shortages.

A leap in fish industry

Zambia has made significant steps in boosting the fish industry by commissioning the US$10 million Aller Aqua Zambia (AAZ) Limited factory in Siavonga.

This was through a partnership between the government of Zambia and the Danish fish feed firm which produces fish feed for freshwater and saltwater aquaculture, with an aim to accelerate both growth and sustainable impact.

The family owned company with operations in Denmark, Poland, Germany, Egypt, Zambia and China is looking to address four of the seventeen UN Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) through this initiative.

With 50,000 tonnes annual production capacity of fish feed, the project was geared towards bridging the national fish deficit of 180,000 tonnes.

Feed producer Skretting in July launched a new community development project to encourage Zambia’s tilapia farmers to operate more sustainably by using quality feed and fingerlings.

These are part of Zambia’s initiatives to boost the industry while breeding depleted fish in all water bodies.

Earlier this year, the Ministry of Livestock and Fisheries moved to extend the fish ban period for three more months in order to curb illegal fishing activities in the country before it was lifted.

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