Western Kenya fish farmers supplied with fish fingerlings to boost smallholder aquaculture development

KENYA – In the western county of Kakamega, fish farmers have been supplied with monosex tilapia fingerlings for purposes of starting fish rearing in ponds as part of the government’s efforts to boost smallholder aquaculture development in the country.

The ADBP project, jointly funded by the government of Kenya and the International Fund for Agricultural Development (IFAD), intends to reach out to smallholder farmers from 15 counties in Kenya.

About 581 farmers from different counties around the country identified through the Aquaculture Business Development Programme (ABDP) are set to benefit from 581,000 fingerlings with each of them getting 1000.

In collaboration with the county government of Kakamega, Labed Cash Marine Enterprise Fish Farm, is supplying fish farmers with fingerlings for this project.

The project kicked off at the beginning of the week when Labed Fish Farm supplied 51 farmers in Lurambi and 44 other farmers from Navakholo.

The fish farm is known to produce about 2 million fingerlings per month and sell them at KES2.50 per fingerling.

The project is intended to carry on throughout the week in order to reach out to all the identified beneficiaries across all the 12 sub-counties from Kakamega.

According to Laban Mwanzo, the owner of Labed Fisg Farm, Kakamega harbours the most beneficiaries of this project as compared to residents from other counties such as Siaya, Busia, Kisumu and Kisii.

“These other counties have received less than 300 000 fingerlings compared to Kakamega,” he noted, adding that farmers who have benefited from the fingerlings will also get fish feeds to support them to cut costs of feeding.

The project to revive fish production comes at a time when Kenya’s fish production has declined from 200,000 tonnes in the early 2000s to 90,000 in 2021 according to the Kenya Fisheries Service (KFS) board.

In response to this setback, the government recently approved a KES 2.5 billion (US$20.35 million) fish project in Kisumu County to increase the county’s fingerling production.

This project also intends to boost the nation’s fingerling production and distribution to seven billion annually.

Besides fingerling production, other components of the project included the facilitation of training and research, a Nile Perch multiplication centre, and the Kenya Fishing School.

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