Samochima — The Samochima inland fish farming syndicate in Okavango has been promised assistance with access to the market for their produce.
Handing over the Samochima fisheries facility, which was renovated under the poverty eradication initiative, Assistant Minister for Presidential Affairs, Governance and Public Administration, Mr Machana Shamukuni said two refrigerated vehicles had been procured.
He said the vehicles would have scheduled visits to different fish farming projects, including Samochima to collect fish for the market.
Mr Shamukuni, who is also Chobe MP, said government was working on creating a market for fish farming projects in the country. He said they encouraged hypermarkets and hotels to buy fish from local fish farming syndicates.
"I must also hasten to say that accessing markets beyond ourselves here requires meeting certain standards, and in light of that, training on meeting standards commenced in Chobe, while Samochima beneficiaries and others in the area are scheduled for the same on the 20th of this month," he said.
Mr Shamukuni said it was the beneficiaries' responsibility to ensure that customer satisfaction was met after workshops by the Botswana Bureau of Standards.
The fish processing and handling equipment that have been procured for the Samochima syndicate include fish salting bins, filleting knives, smoking kilns, freezers, drying racks and weighing scales.
A fishing boat was also handed to the group as part of the package under the poverty eradication initiative.
On another issue, Mr Shamukuni noted that many good projects failed because of group dynamics, and urged the syndicate to work on modalities to run a successful business in order to avoid personalities denting the noble idea.
"Many from all over will come to benchmark, let them benchmark best practices because the business will be managed well," he said.
Still on fish farming, government has embarked on eight fish farming projects to pilot the intervention as one of the packages under the Poverty Eradication Programme.
The projects include fresh water aquaculture at Shakawe, Kareng, Thito, Parakarungu and Toteng as well as the inland fish farming at Samochima and Lake Ngami.
There is also a hatchery in Mmadinare which is almost complete.
Stating challenges facing them, Samochima fisheries chairperson, Mr Kakuru Disho cited a market for their produce as the main c
<i>Source : BOPA</i>