Fisheries production in Ilocos up despite dry spell - BFAR
By Jessie R. Valdez
San Fernando City, La Union (18 September) -- The Bureau of Fisheries and Aquatic Resources (BFAR) Regional Field Office I (RFO) said the fishery production during the 1st semester of CY 2007 in Ilocos Region have increased by 9.66% from 57,473.98 MT of last year CY 2006, same period to 63.025.76 MT.
BFAR Regional Director Nestor Domenden said the increase in fisheries production was attributed to a good period performances from all sub-sectors as the BFAR-RFO I continually provides production enhancement projects to fisherfolk such as livelihood and techno-demo projects and the continuous provision of technical assistance in developing new agribusiness lands which were propelled by the private and individual investors and entrepreneurs.
"With this fishery production output, BFAR expects the growth on fisheries to remain on track if not to exceed the target for the second semester of 2007 despite the dry spell which is expected to last until December", Domenden added.
For his part, Buenaventura Ayson, Asst. Planning Officer said in their 1st semester fish production (MT) Ilocos Region 2007 report, the aquaculture sector which shared 64.46% from the total production had increased by 9.99% while the municipal and commercial fisheries attained an increase of 7.50% and 22.04% respectively.
Ayson added that the fish sufficiency level in the Ilocos during the 1st semester had also increased by 5.98% from 114.53% in 2006 to 121.38%. The surplus production is intended to feed Mega Metro Manila Urban markets and some were used as raw materials for the fish processors who are expanding their business operations to open foreign markets worldwide.
In the province of La Union, fishery production during the 1st semester of this year 2007 has increased by 2.72% from 6,636.91 MT last year to 6,81748.48. On its commercial fisheries it has also achieved an increase of 22.45% from 335.5 of last year 2006 to 410.81 this 2007 while on its aquaculture sector, an increase of 8.09% from 2510.08 to 2713.17.
To combat the effects of dry spell on fishery sector, the BFAR-RFO I has the following mitigating measures: 1) produce more tilapia fingerlings for freshwater areas and culture of milkfish, 2) opening up of new mariculture parks in Rosario, La Union as production sites for high-value fish species.
Meanwhile, the Philippines ranks no. 8 among the top 10 fish-producing countries in the world with current production at 4.16 million MT, which represents 2.8% of the total world production of 146.27million MT based on statistics from the Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO). (PIA La Union) [top]