Articles

Kakamega County Unveils Strategic Plan to Boost Local Fish Market and Support Fish Farmers

By Seliphar Machoni

In a strategic move to boost the local fish market, the County Government of Kakamega plans to establish fish kiosks equipped with coolers in Mumias, Malava, and Kakamega town main market.

Benjamin Andama, the County Executive Committee Member for Agriculture, Livestock, Fisheries, and Cooperatives Development, emphasized that these kiosks aim to create new market opportunities for fish farmers, addressing the surging demand for fresh fish within the county.

Andama highlights the flourishing state of fish farming in Kakamega, stating, “Over 6,000 active fish ponds contribute to the diversification options for more than 300,000 farmers.”

The county’s commitment to food security is underscored by plans to set up an additional 2,000 fish ponds in the current financial year.

Notably, the International Fund for Agricultural Development (IFAD) plays a pivotal role in supporting rural fish pond establishment through the Aquaculture Business Development Programme (ABDP).

“To further assist fish farmers, the County government has invested Sh. 9 million in procuring fish feeds, intending to distribute them to farmers at subsidized rates,” Andama explains.

This subsidy initiative aims to alleviate the financial burden on farmers, who have often been discouraged by the high costs of fish feeds.

The county’s dedication to realizing Governor Fernandes Barasa’s Food Security Manifesto is evident, especially given the challenging landscape of expensive feed costs nationwide.

Jessica Wesonga, the County Chief Officer for Livestock, Veterinary Services, and Fisheries Development, encourages farmers, saying, “If you produce fish, there is already a ready market for us in this county, and we are also able to export with time.”

She emphasizes the productivity of fish farming and the positive trajectory it adds to Kakamega’s agricultural landscape.

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