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Fish farmers get 32,000 fingerlings to restock ponds

By Lydia Nyawira | Jun 14th 2016 | 2 min read

Fish farmers yesterday received 32,000 fingerlings to restock their ponds in a bid to revive the sub-sector and boost production.

Agriculture executive Robert Thuo said the move was part of a bigger project to issue 2,600 local farmers with 134,000 fingerlings.

"We will give the farmers an additional 50,000 fingerlings in mid July and another 52,000 in August," Thuo said, adding the fingerlings will be used to restock at least 3,000 fish ponds in 30 wards.

 "Wamagana Fish Factory is currently underutilised. It is processing 200 kilogrammes of fish per day against its capacity of 12,000. We need farmers to supply the factory with more fish," Thuo added.

He added: "I would also like to challenge Nyeri Fish Farmers Cooperative Society to consider manufacturing fish feeds to reduce costs for farmers and enhance yields."

He urged farmers to put in more efforts noting fish farming is a lucrative venture with a ready market.

"Farmers will no longer experience post-harvest losses because we have fully equipped the sub-counties with freezers and a refrigerated truck to transport fish to the processing plant," Thuo said.

He said they have procured the fingerlings at the cost of Sh2 million and urged the farmers to register with the cooperative society to reap the full benefits of fish farming.

"We want to ensure the factory processes fish on a 24-hour basis. However, this will only be possible if farmers take up the challenge and restock their ponds," Thuo said.

Fisheries director James Gakuo said the fingerlings provided will attain the required market size within six months if well taken care of.

In July last year, the county government announced it would invest Sh21 million in fish farming. The money would be used to purchase fingerlings, set up fish processing and storage facilities.

At least Sh3.6 million would be used to purchase fingerlings.

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