Dar pushes measures to raise tuna production

Published February 14, 2020, 12:00 AM

by manilabulletin_admin


Agriculture Secretary William Dar wants several measures applied to improve the country’s tuna output, including the application of research outputs over the next 10 years as well as the proper regulations on sustainable fishing.
To sustain production and double the income of stakeholders, Agriculture Secretary William D. Dar pressed for the integration of results gathered through years of research on local tuna industry.

Dar said this during a meeting with the members of the SOCCSKSARGEN Federation of Fishing and Allied Industries, Inc. (SFFAII).

According to him, the results of the research studies on local tuna must be projected and institutionalized in the next 10 to 20 years.

Aside from this, Dar also acknowledged the challenges faced by the industry players such as rising cost of operation and high shipping rate for domestic cargo.

Other concerns he discussed with SFFAII included the lack and/or non-enforcement of laws for unregulated fishing in municipal waters; pending regulations in support of sustainable fishing; and increasing demand for certified fish products, port rehabilitation, and strategies to increase the production of tuna.

“The tuna industry should be given attention as contributes greatly to the total gross value-adding of the fishery sector,” Dar said.

He reiterated that laws on illegal and unregulated fishing in municipal waters should be properly implemented.

“The laws are there, and therefore must be carried out,” Dar said.

Because of this, Dar directed the Department of Agriculture’s (DA) Bureau of Fisheries and Aquatic Resources (BFAR) to limit and refrain from distributing small boats that can only go to as far as 10-kilometer municipal waters.

“Why not give bigger boats to a group that can cover 20 kilometers,” Dar suggested.

He also urged BFAR to start distributing boats with cold storage equipment to fisherfolk cooperatives stressing that the Department does not encourage individual fishing.