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Cagayan Valley Tops Charts for Tilapia

PHILIPPINES - According to Hermogenes Tambalque, extension chief of the Bureau of Fisheries and Aquatic Resources (BFAR) in the region, tilapia production in the Cagayan Valley is on the upswing.

The region now emerging as the Philippines’ tilapia capital, posting an all-time high record production of the fish, known also as Saint Peter’s fish.

BFAR says that homegrown supply for the tilapia has been growing by 37.25 per cent for the past five years. It reached record highs last year with production of nearly 14,000 metric tons (MT).

Dr. Jovita Ayson, BFAR regional director attributes the growth of tilapia production to government interventions. Among these were the provision of fast-growing species, accreditation of private hatcheries to ensure supply of quality fingerlings, establishment of demonstration farms and continued technical assistance as well as marketing strategies.

This also included providing free fingerlings to newly constructed fishponds, a strategy which resulted in the dissemination of tilapia in the region as far south as Nueva Vizcaya, especially in Diadi town where the region’s most delectable tilapia is harvested, she said.