June 16, 2017


FAO sees 'great' potential of tilapia farming in Africa



A new publication put out by the UN Food and Agriculture Organisation (FAO) highlights the potential of tilapia farming in Africa, particularly sub-Saharan Africa.


The new online publication notes that the world tilapia aquaculture production grew 12% annually, from less than 500,000 tonnes in the early 1990s to over 5 million tonnes in the mid-2010s, with Africa accounting for 20% of the growth.


"There is little doubt that there is great potential for the development of tilapia farming in Africa and in sub-Saharan Africa in particular", according to the FAO publication entitled "Social and Economic Performance of Tilapia Farming in Africa".


To realize the potential, however, an appropriate development policy and sector management are needed, it said. The publication includes five studies on tilapia farming in Egypt, Ghana, Kenya, Nigeria and Uganda, which all accounted for nearly 95% of Africa's tilapia aquaculture production in the mid-2010s.


Each study provides a comprehensive account for the development of tilapia farming in the respective country with focus on the social and economic dimensions. Tilapia value chains are analysed in the context of the entire aquaculture or fish value chains from various perspectives (e.g. technical, economic, social and institutional).


Issues, constraints and challenges are highlighted and discussed, and potential solutions are recommended. Despite the vast information and knowledge provided by the studies, there are still many unknowns about tilapia farming in Africa, especially on the economic performance. Further study is needed to fill the information and knowledge gaps, the publication said.