Training aims to boost skills for increased farm yields

KISUMU, KENYA: Farm Africa, an international NGO has partnered with the Dutch government to promote fish farming through technical and business development skills among farmers to boost production.

Under the Kenya Market-led Aquaculture Programme (KMAP), the body is implementing the project, considered one of the biggest aquaculture programmes within the East African region.

The four-year project involves industry players from both the national and county governments, fish feed manufacturers and suppliers, fingerling producers, fish traders and entrepreneur fish farmers.

Farm Africa has so far trained 435 of the total 1,067 targeted farmers on technical and business development skills to help boost their skills for increased farm yields.

KMAP’s environment impact assessment strategy advises the farmers on how to produce fish with minimal impact on the environment.

“Local farmers also had their aqua-hubs tested by the Dutch companies to verify whether they meet the required standards for fingerlings breeding under the Recirculating Aquaculture System (RAS).The system enhances the breeding of fingerlings under minimal water in order for them to grow into fish under the high density environment,” a statement from the organization said.

The statement further explained that Dutch firms have also partnered with a local company in developing a local online tool to help the farmers manage their farm with in-built water quality sensors.

It added that Farm Africa in partnership with Netherlands embassy in Nairobi recently showcased some of its activities during the annual Eldoret University Trade Fair that took place between last month where aquaculture farmers presented some of their products.

“During the trade fair farmers had an opportunity to showcase their products and also met stakeholders from the State department of Fisheries, the Blue Economy, Aquaculture Association of Kenya (AAK) and Kenya Fish Processors and Exporters Associations (AFPEK),” pointed out the statement.

 The Kenyan fish farming industry has a huge potential but due to numerous challenges it has never been fully utilized to meet the growing demand for fish products. Commercial fish farming is considered one of the world’s most promising industries and in Kenya the sector is attracting agribusiness investors, added the statement.

 Farm Africa is based in UK and are involved in building a prosperous rural Africa. Currently they are in Kenya, Ethiopia, Tanzania and Uganda.