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Fish Supplies Get a Boost in Food Stability Programme

by Ellen Hardy
16 April 2008, at 1:00am

PHILIPPINES - The Bureau of Fisheries and Aquatic Resources (BFAR) has dispersed more than 3 million tilapia fingerlings into various freshwater farms and fishponds in in Cagayan Valley.

Introducing the fish to the lakes and ponds is part of the Government's policy to strengthen the its food stability program particularly on fish production.

According to Dr. Jovita Ayson, BFAR director for Cagayan Valley, the dispersal of these fingerlings was made during the first quarter of this year. This consignment is in addition to the millions of stocks distributed previously in various freshwater rivers and areas in the region's four mainland provinces. This included Nueva Vizcaya, a known producer of the region's most delectable tilapia, known as Saint Peter's fish.

"These quality fingerlings, when grown, either in private farms or communal bodies of water such as rivers, lakes and water impounding dams, can be a significant source for our protein requirement, thereby contributing to food security," she explained.

Not Rehabilitation Programme

The first quarter regular dispersal does not include the 1.45 million fingerlings provided within the same period for emergency rehabilitation assistance for fishers affected by recent calamities, said BFAR.

Under its Goal One program, the agency provides free tilapia fingerlings for new production zones such as newly constructed fishponds and fish cages.

"Free fingerlings provided to walk-in clients and to the local government units under our annual dispersal commitment are accounted under the Regular Dispersal Program," said Ms Ayson.

Aside from releasing fingerlings to the bodies of water in the region as well as extending the same to registered fish pond owners, BFAR also provides free seed inputs for other species such as saline - tolerant tilapia, red tilapia, carp, bangus and oyster which are expected to bring out augmentation supply for the general fish sufficiency program in Cagayan Valley region.

Ellen Hardy