Agriculture

Take up crocodile farming, fish farmers urged

By OLIVER SAMBOKO

SMALL Scale Fish Farmers Association (SSFFA) has called on its members to consider diversifying into crocodile farming apart from fish keeping in order for them to improve their business portfolio and income.

Association chairperson Victor Chatilika said crocodile skin business was lucrative and currently fetching over $9 per centimeter on the international market.

He said demand for crocodile skin and meat from China and other countries was rising hence the need for local aquaculture farmers to take advantage by venturing into croc farming instead of only concentrating on fish farming.

“Hard times like these call for farmers to diversify and take advantage of any opportunity to improve their income, but of course this cannot be achieved without  Government coming up with a well designed

 plan to support the initiative,” he said.

Mr Chatilika said according to market study done by his association,  currently South Africa was leading crocodile business  with total exports valued at about $73 million annually followed by Zambia at $65 Million and Zimbabwe $30 Million per year.

He said Government should also come up with a deliberate plan aimed at encouraging the development of the crocodile sector as this is the only way the country can be able to attract direct foreign investment in the aquaculture subsectors. Mr Chatilika said the full development of the aquaculture subsector was not only good for creation of the much needed jobs for the youths but also would lead to the growth of the economy which is currently on its kness following the outbreak of the Corona virus.

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