Monday, May 23, 2011

Fish feed to boost industry

FISH farmers in Papua New Guinea, especially those who specialise in trout and tilapia farming, are set to improve  production with fish feed to be made available soon, The National reports.

The National Fisheries Authority (NFA) in collaboration with Australian Centre for International Agricultural Research (ACIAR) and the Department of Agriculture and Livestock had researched and formulated a feed using local ingredients.

Trialling of this feed under farming conditions in the past five years had resulted in the semi-commercial production of fish feed.

In the past, feed, especially for trout, was imported from overseas until recently.

With the increased number of fish farming activities happening around the country, the demand for a proper fish feed had increased.

NFA and its partners have been working to address the demand through the establishment of mini-feed mills and research and development to  find a locally available, affordable and nutritious fish feed.

NFA displayed the innovative products during the National Agricultural Research Institute (NARI) show earlier this month in Lae to promote fisheries and marine resources activities.

During the show, NFA displayed several 25kg bags of fish feed which was eye-catching for the fish farmers.

The farmers were so keen to learn  the techniques, the ingredients, equipment the processes involved.

NFA's aquaculture and inland fisheries division, responsible for fresh water aquaculture and inland fish farming, is taking the lead in this development, headed by pioneer aquaculturist Jacob Wani.

Currently, the number of fish farming activities – both fresh water and marine areas – have increased overwhelmingly as a result of NFA's support to the fish farmers through the project development fund.    

The NARI show had given opportunities for NFA to participate and promote innovation in fisheries and also to carry out awareness regarding NFA project development funding (PDF) activities.

It also gave an opportunity for NFA to liaise with provincial fisheries division and the fisheries cooperatives, especially the fishermen and fish farmers to showcase their products at the show and meet the fish buyers to supply fisheries products.  

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