Fish farmers laud ‘Aquaculture for food & jobs program’
The Ghana Aquaculture Association wants the Ministry of Fisheries and Aquaculture Development to improve its surveillance and reduce the instances of diseases even as it considers implementing the aquaculture for food and jobs program.
The group has lauded the move but fears the gains could be eroded with the presence of instances of diseases at some fish farms.
The comments follow the disclosure of the program by the Minister, Elizabeth Afoley Quaye at the National Farmers Day Celebration.
A member of the Aquaculture Association, Kwame Safo who spoke to Citi Business News said the move should also help increase export revenue from fish in the long term.
Commenting on the specific needs that they may require to enhance their business, he highlighted issues of vaccines and reduced import duties.
“Often the demand is for the input, the feed cost is what farmers complain about and now vaccination if needed, is also something that farmers complain about. Also waiving of import duties on all farm inputs including feed inputs,” he stated.
The sector Minister, Elizabeth Afoley Quaye is yet to give details on the program.
She has however hinted that the aquaculture for food and jobs will involve the provision of inputs to farmers to improve their output.
Already, a similar program embarked on by the agric ministry has made Ghana self sufficient in maize production at least for this year.
But Kwame Safo believes that recent cases of diseases on some tilapia farms require swift attention from the Ministry to avert any loss when the program is eventually rolled out.
“It’s a very unfortunate event and there are all sorts of theories as to what exactly are going on; but there are words about that there are some dodgy practices certain farms are adopting and that is affecting the situation. Nobody really knows what exactly and how to pinpoint it,” he indicated.