NEW DELHI : The Marine Products Export Development Authority (MPEDA) has set a target to export seafood products worth about Rs.1 lakh crore from the country by 2025, said its Chairman K.N. Raghavan.
The Chairman, along with the National Fisheries Development Board (NFDB) Chief Executive C. Suvarna, Commissioner (Fisheries) K. Kanna Babu, MPEDA Director M. Karthikeyan, Secretary K. S. Pradeep and RGCA Director S. Kandan, launched the golden jubilee celebrations of MPEDA on Tuesday.
Addressing the farmers, Mr. Raghavan said during 2021-22, MPEDA had shipped marine products worth about Rs.57,586 crore ($7.76 Billion) from India, and the share of Andhra Pradesh in the overall exports was about 23.66% in quantity and 34.76% in terms of the total export value.
While congratulating the MPEDA officials for celebrating the 50 years of service of the organisation, the Chairman thanked the A.P. aquaculture farmers for their contribution to the nation.
“MPEDA will be in the forefront to help the aqua farmers in the State, and encourage more cultivators to come into the field, which has a good potential in A.P.,” he said.
“We are planning to export marine products, worth about Rs.1 lakh crore, and double the production and the exports from A.P.,” the Chairman said and sought the cooperation of the farmers in this regard.
“Andhra Pradesh stood top in aquaculture production in the country followed by Gujarat, West Bengal and Tamil Nadu. There is a lot of scope to enhance the production as there are abundant natural resources in the State,” he said.
BMC at Vizag
He said the Rajiv Gandhi Centre for Aquaculture (RGCA), a research unit of MPEDA, would set up Brood stock Multiplication Centre (BMC) of Tiger variety shrimp, developed from Andaman and Nicobar Islands, in Visakhapatnam soon. The pilot project was being established with the aid of Department of Fisheries, he said.
He appealed to the farmers to produce disease-free shrimp as the consumers in the international market were preferring quality stocks without antibiotics.
“We are exporting marine products to many countries, including the U.S., European Union, South East Asia and Japan. More avenues are being explored,” he said.
Later, Mr. Raghavan interacted with farmers, hatchery owners, processing unit heads, exporters, feed and seed developers and other stakeholders. Along with Mr. Kandan, he visited the GIFT Tilapia fish project and research unit, being raised by the RGCA at Manikonda village in Krishna district.
The NFDB Chief Executive said that A.P. farmers were the leaders in the country, and advised them to take up diversified aquaculture and raise seabass, mud crab and other varieties.
“NFDB is extending loans to aqua farmers through Pradhan Manthri Matsya Sampada Yojana (PMMSY) and the Fisheries Institute Development Fund (FIDF),” Dr. Suvarna said.
The Fisheries Commissioner stressed the need for increasing cage culture in sea, as the demand for shrimp and fish was growing fast.
“Aquaculture ponds along the coast can be diversified for growing mud crab, seabass, tilapia, cobia, pompano and other varieties,” Mr. Kanna Babu said.