High ex­port po­ten­tials for fish, fish­ery prod­ucts

Agriculture - - News - BY DALISAY DG. FER­NAN­DEZ

THERE ARE HIGH high ex­port po­ten­tials for the Philip­pines’ fish and fish­ery prod­ucts, mak­ing the coun­try a key player in the ex­port mar­ket. This is the re­sult of the coun­try’s vast nat­u­ral re­sources, and the mar­ket de­mand and good prices be­ing of­fered for ex­port prod­ucts. There is a need to ad­dress the in­ad­e­quate sup­ply of raw ma­te­ri­als en­coun­tered by ex­porters and to help small and medium en­trepreneurs (SMEs) pro­mote live and frozen fish and fish­ery prod­ucts.

Prob­lems re­gard­ing live fish and fish­ery prod­ucts busi­nesses in­clude the in­ad­e­quate sup­ply of raw ma­te­ri­als, posthar­vest losses, wastage in pro­cess­ing, poor qual­ity prod­ucts, adul­ter­ated raw ma­te­ri­als, ir­reg­u­lar­ity of sup­ply, and strin­gent ex­port re­quire­ments.

In terms of mar­ket­ing and the ex­port of live and frozen fish and fish­ery prod­ucts, the prob­lems the coun­try faces in­clude ob­tain­ing ex­port re­quire­ments, com­pe­ti­tion with other coun­tries, reg­is­tra­tion re­quire­ments, and mul­ti­layer mar­ket­ing sys­tems.

In con­sid­er­a­tion of these prob­lems, the re­cent Fish­eries Women En­trepreneurs’ Fo­rum iden­ti­fied some of the prod­ucts with ex­port po­ten­tial to in­clude black tiger shrimp, prawns, crabs, tuna, abalone, lob­ster, octopus, cut­tle­fish, milk­fish, sea­weeds, groupers, squid, eel, si­ganid, and hair tail.

The fo­rum was con­ducted by the Philip­pine Coun­cil for Agri­cul­ture, Aquatic and Nat­u­ral Re­sources Re­search and De­vel­op­ment of the Depart­ment of Sci­ence and Technology (PCAARRD-DOST), Na­tional Net­work of Women in Fish­eries, Inc. (WINFISH), and the Bureau of Fish­eries and Aquatic Re­sources-Re­gion 13 (BFAR-13).

The gather­ing iden­ti­fied prob­lems that af­fect the coun­try’s fish and fish­ery prod­ucts, as well as the nec­es­sary mea­sures re­quired to help the SMEs which are en­gaged in man­u­fac­tur­ing these prod­ucts.

Sev­eral mea­sures were iden­ti­fied to ad­dress these con­cerns. These in­clude pro­vid­ing SMEs with the rel­e­vant train­ing and sem­i­nars, tech­ni­cal as­sis­tance, in­vest­ment in R&D, and ac­cess to for­eign mar­kets.

The fo­rum also de­ter­mined the need for pro­ces­sors to be knowl­edge­able about the rules and reg­u­la­tions in the trade and ex­port of fish and fish­ery prod­ucts, com­pet­i­tive and sus­tain­able de­vel­op­ment/con­tin­ued ex­pan­sion of aqua­cul­ture, the Euro­pean mar­ket for ex­portable fish­ery prod­ucts, agree­ment for mar­ket ac­cess for fish and fish­ery prod­ucts, trade rules and reg­u­la­tory co­op­er­a­tion, in­tel­lec­tual prop­erty rights, ser­vices and in­vest­ment, and pub­lic pro­cure­ment.

In the de­vel­op­ment of live and frozen fish and fish­ery prod­ucts ex­port busi­nesses, the in­dus­try’s needs in­clude the de­vel­op­ment of link­ages with the present ex­porters, or­ga­ni­za­tion of ex­porters, up­dated train­ing on fish han­dling and ori­en­ta­tion on food safety (GMP, SSOP, and HACCP), tech­ni­cal as­sis­tance for pack­ag­ing/ la­bel­ing, and im­prove­ment in fish han­dling pro­to­cols.

At present, pro­ces­sors feel that the fish and fish­ery prod­uct busi­ness has a big op­por­tu­nity to ex­pand with the help of the con­cerned gov­ern­ment agen­cies.

Through the fo­rum, the par­tic­i­pants learned the po­ten­tials of live and frozen fish and fish­ery prod­ucts; about the ex­port busi­ness and its re­quire­ments; mar­ket match­ing; link­ages for ex­port and mar­ket­ing strate­gies; and tech­ni­cal, fi­nan­cial and equip­ment as­sis­tance be­ing of­fered by gov­ern­ment agen­cies like DOST, BFAR, and DTI.

Knowl­edge gained from the fo­rum will help the com­mu­nity en­hance aware­ness re­gard­ing fish­ery prod­ucts with ex­port po­ten­tials, share in­for­ma­tion with fish­er­folk and women to be­come en­trepreneurs and ex­porters, dis­sem­i­nate in­for­ma­tion through train­ing, and up­grade en­ter­prises with new tech­nolo­gies.

Fi­nally, the fo­rum also came up with some rec­om­men­da­tions on how to en­hance the ex­port in­dus­try for live and frozen fish and fish­ery prod­ucts.

Among these were the brand­ing of fish­ery prod­ucts, adop­tion of ex­port and cer­ti­fi­ca­tion re­quire­ments by the SMEs, aware­ness of in­ter­na­tional prod­uct stan­dards, pro­vi­sion of a pub­lic plant for pro­cess­ing, im­prove­ment in fish­ery prod­ucts, par­tic­i­pa­tion of SMEs in the fo­rum, and ex­pan­sion of pro­duc­tion.

With this joint ac­tiv­ity, SMEs were en­cour­aged to col­lab­o­rate and link with the key ex­port play­ers and gov­ern­ment agen­cies to en­sure the de­vel­op­ment of the live and frozen fish and fish­ery prod­ucts in­dus­try.

(This ar­ti­cle is edited from the ver­sion which ap­pears on­line at http:// www.pcaarrd.dost.gov.ph/home/por­tal/in­dex.php/quick-in­for­ma­tiondis­patch/3041-smes-as­sisted-on-ex­port-of-fish-and-fish­ery-prod­ucts)

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