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Malay farmers urged to go into freshwater fish production

MALAYSIA - Freshwater fish is the next best thing for farmers and breeders to venture into due to its huge commercial potential, writes Roslina Mohamad in The Star.

According to Federal Agriculture Marketing Authority (Fama) chairman Datuk Abdul Rahim Bakri, it served as an alternative for protein other than seawater fish which had become more expensive now due to the high fuel price.

He added that not only the demand had been on the rise, capital involved to breed freshwater fish was not as much as that compared to producing seawater fish.

"It needs natural elements that are in abundance in the country such as rivers and freshwater lakes.

"All you need are cages and of course, the food which has to be monitored regularly to ensure quality products," he told reporters after an official opening of a freshwater fish promotional campaign at Fama agriculture market in Darul Makmur Stadium carpark here on Sunday.

It was performed by State Islamic Dakwah and Special Functions Committee Chairman Datuk Ahmad Munawar Abdul Jalil who represented Mentri Besar Datuk Seri Adnan Yaakob.

Also present were state Fama director Manon Jali and the agency's livestock and aquaculture senior manager Mohari Moharal.

Abdul Rahim said last year's total market value for agricultural activities was RM7bil and that included aquaculture projects such as freshwater fish.

"The aquaculture projects easily contributed between 10% and 20% to that amount and it just goes to show the huge potential the activity has, commercially," he added.

He cited Pahang as an example, as the state's annual turnover for freshwater fish activities was between RM3mil and RM5mil.

Abdul Rahim also said Fama had farming and marketing contracts for freswater fish that were worth RM1.7mil.

the Fish Site Editor

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