Kakamega seems to not be the place one would think fish farming is viable, however, the county is awash with fish ponds and the county government has often supported this venture.
For example, fish farmers recently received fingerlings from the county government in a plan aimed at increasing fish production for local consumption and export.
‘We are targeting an annual production of two tonnes of fish for local consumption and export and as such we have distributed 1000 fingerlings to 489 farmers’, Chief Officer for Livestock and Fisheries Dr. Kelly Nelima said yesterday in an interview
This translates to 489,000 fingerlings. Dr Nelima also noted Tilapia takes only eight months to mature.
Economics of fish farming
The CO said that farmers will rake in at least Kshs250,000 for a mature tilapia sold at a cost of Kshs250 noting that each pond carries 1,000 fingerlings.
Nelima said that the local demand for fish is high and that the county only produces 1,000 kilos of fish yearly which falls short of the needs.
The county also plans to increase commercial fish production by supporting more farmers to venture into the business. Currently there are only 2,300 registered fish farmers in the county.
“By 2022, we want to ensure the number of the farmers rise to 5,000. We can therefore be able to meet the local demand.”
Last year, the deputy governor H.E. Philip Museve Kutima told residents that the county will increase the allocation to ensure growth of the fishing industry activity in the next financial year. Last financial year’s allocation stood at Ksh. 90 million.
Theft of fish from fish ponds is one of the biggest challenge that the fish business faces in Kakamega.
Most of the fish consumed in Kakamega comes from Port Victoria in Busia County.
Featured image courtesy of NairobiWire
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