By Benjamin Flowers
The Caribbean Regional Fisheries Mechanism (CRFM) is preparing to hold a regional workshop on establishing a value chain for fisheries products to address regional food security.
Regional experts met this month to begin the preparatory work for the workshop, which will be held in 2016. Through the workshop, the CRFM will gather key public and private stakeholders in the fisheries and aquaculture sector, to try to bring improved benefits to fishermen.
The idea is to build capacity among key government and private sector representatives, and in particular small and medium enterprises (SMEs) in fisheries and aquaculture, to use the value chain approach to optimize economic benefits.
The value chain approach looks at every operational level in the industry, including production, processing, distribution on the local and export markets, as well as marketing and sales to wholesale agents and retail buyers.
The training will be followed by the development of short-term and medium-term action plans for implementation of the value chain in selected pilot studies within CRFM member states.
“An effective value chain will link supply and demand and connect fishers and fish farmers to both domestic and international markets,” the CRFM said.
“The main beneficiaries of this project will be the fishers, small and medium enterprises in fisheries and aquaculture, national fisheries authorities and economic development agencies in the CRFM member states.”
The training will be delivered by the CRFM, and the Department of Agricultural Economics Faculty of Food and Agriculture, at the University of the West Indies, Trinidad and Tobago campus.