Construction of a new aquaculture facility at the National Fisheries Authority in Twickenham Park, St. Catherine, which is expected to cost an estimated $69 million, is to get under way this year.
Funding is being provided through the World Bank, and the facility is expected to be completed by 2023.
Minister of Agriculture and Fisheries, Hon. Floyd Green, made the disclosure while making his contribution to the 2021/22 Sectoral Debate in the House of Representatives on May 12.
“Aquaculture is a real opportunity. The ability to expand the participants in aquaculture is critical to our food security. If we are to achieve this, we must have a modern and efficient aquaculture hatchery facility,” he said.
Mr. Green said this new hatchery will increase fingerling (advanced fry) production by 300 per cent.
“We will move from a capacity of 1.5 million fry per year to five million fry per year when it is fully operational. What this means is that over the next few years, we can transform our freshwater fish capacity by some 400 per cent to 870 million tonnes,” he said.
In addition, Mr. Green said the Ministry will be launching a promotional campaign in June that aims to encourage Jamaicans to consume more freshwater fish, such as tilapia.