Raanan Fish Feed WA, the main producer of fish feed in Ghana has organized a day’s technical fish health workshop with tilapia farmers in Akosombo in the Asuogyaman district of the Eastern region, where the country’s biggest tilapia producers are located.
The program was promoted by Raanan Fish Feed WA which also includes training and improving the Aquaculture Department of the Ministry of Fisheries and Aquaculture Development’s Veterinary Laboratory to improve monitoring and diagnosis in fish farms.
In attendance was Fisheries minister, Honorable Elisabeth Afoley Quaye.
French Veterinary Officer, Dr Lebreton together with Raanan Fish Feed Expert Jacques Magnee with contribution from Dr Adjei from the MOFAD Lab Services, released the result of a comprehensive and intensive study that monitored and screened fish health in Ghanaian Tilapia farms over the last 2 years.
The results compelled the offering of technical advice to tilapia farmers regarding the use of natural and preventive action to improve the resistance of tilapia in cages.
With good farm practices, tilapia farmers are able to produce high quality fish locally. “The Volta Lake’s water is not contaminated by any source of pollution from mining, industrial pollution from big cities or intensive agricultural activities. This therefore presents the opportunity for fish farmers to produce a naturally high-quality fish for the local market,” said M. Magnee.
Preventive and natural practices such as vaccination and feed additives are therefore recommended by the French Vet Services.
Another recommendation put across by the technical team is to reduce the density of fish in the cages.
The Minister of Fisheries and Aquaculture Development, Mrs. Elizabeth Naa Afoley Quaye in her allocution thanked Raanan Fish Feed and Dr Lebreton for their support through this useful initiative.
She also reaffirmed her motivation to improve support to fish farmers in the country. “We need to work all together to raise the industry and increase the local production of fish and create new employment,” she said.
A committee has been created to study and analyze the needs of the industry.
The Minister also underscored the need to produce bigger volumes of maïs and soya in order to reduce the cost of feed.
As farmers showed their concern about newly arrived Chinese fish producers who do not respect local policies by importing illegally frozen tilapia and tilapia strain, the Minister announced her decision to reinforce the policy and legal provisions.
Affected farmers have also expressed concern over the aggressive dumping practices of those new farms, as local fish sellers and market women favor the Chinese fish for its low price, thus deteriorating the image of quality of the Tilapia produced in Ghana.