Poor sales forces dept to drop caged fishing

Poor sales forces dept to drop caged fishing

 After the failure of the first phase of the caged breeding of Pangasius fish, the Fisheries department is now breeding the popular consumer variety - Tilapia fish.

H S Veerappa Gowda, director of the Fisheries department, told Deccan Herald  that marketing and sale of the newly introduced caged fish had failed. Consumers did not like Pangasius fish, because it is smooth, slightly oily and meat is very soft. But the idea behind introducing this new breed was that it looks like cat fish, is scaly, grows fast and the yield is ten times more than other fresh water and marine species in a small area.

He said that they had reared 100 tonnes in a quarter acre of water sheet with good aeration and circulation. But they could market only 35 tonnes in December and January. It was sold across Bengaluru, Mysuru, Mandya and Kodagu.

The maximum sale was in Kodagu and Mysuru. But, only two tonnes were sold in Bengaluru, despite the city being home to the maximum number of fish eaters. We had expected 10 times more of the sale. So, in the second round of harvesting, we have introduced Tilapia, which will be available to consumers in another six months. This was not introduced earlier because it takes a long time to breed. But now there is no choice for us.

The staff at the Fisheries department outlet, Cubbon Park, said that the sales of the Pangasius variety were not good. Only some fish eateries experimented with this new variety, they said.

The department had introduced caged fishing for the first time in KRS dam in November, 2014, to breed more inland fresh water fish. The market is expanding, but the production is not matching in terms of quality and quantity. The demand for fresh water and marine fish is increasing and by rearing caged fish, production and supply will increase. Consumers will get good quality fish within 12 hours and fishermen can also make a fast buck.

The department has put on hold its plan to explore the expansion of caged fishing in Kabini, Harangi, Hemavathi and Narayanapura dams.

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