“Check check check it out King fish, Carite, Oily fish for sale $10 ah pound fresh from La Brea oil spill”. Can you imagine listening to a vendor at the fish market repeat that rhythm? I don’t know about you, but that would cause me to turn around and leave. No fish vendor in his right mind would say such a thing; however one of the consequences of the recent oil spill is the notion some consumers have of fish caught in the Southern part of the island. Consumers are no longer concerned with the price of fish, what they want to know is where it was caught.
With the period of Lent fast approaching, there is a gap in the supply of fish. For those of you who are not familiar with Lent, it’s the time when Christians would fast for Easter. During this occasion, fish is consumed in large quantities.
However, the dry season contributes to the decrease in the fish supply. Coupled with the recent oil spill fishermen are plagued with a challenge of how to meet consumer demand for the approaching Lent season. There is an opportunity for the aquaculture industry, in particular, local Tilapia farmers, to capitalise on the opening in the market because of the reduced competition from fishermen.
Tilapia is considered one of the fastest growing fish entrepreneurial activities in the world. It’s poised to increase the availability of fish in the market and lower the price which will make it more accessible to low-income consumers. Fish contains essential nutrients such as Omega 3s, EPA and DHA that are required for a balanced diet. Tilapia could also assist in Trinidad and Tobago’s efforts towards improving the island’s food security and nutrition.
It will also provide job opportunities for the unemployed or those interested in starting their agribusiness. It’s a thriving enterprise that now has a chance to obtain an edge on the market.
Is there a national aquaculture initiative in your country? If yes feel free to share about your country’s efforts in its development. If not would you encourage your government to establish one?
Below is a video from R. Chin on his small-scale Tilapia venture.
Photo credit: Flickr