Said Omar Shaaban, Zanzibar’s Minister of Trade and Industrial Development, made the observation when launching the sea cucumber farming project in Fungurefu, Unguja North region, noting that the government was focusing on seafood such as sea cucumbers, seaweed and crabs to improve income. of the sector.
President Hussein Ali Mwinyi has set this priority in the development of the people of Zanzibar in the blue economy and deep-sea fishing, he said, saying that thanks to the Covid-19 response funds from the International Monetary Fund (IMF), the government finalized plans for the construction of 100 ponds.
The sea cucumber farming facilities will be used by residents of Unguja and Pemba districts with modern infrastructure and sea cucumber fry, he said, urging seafood farmers to seize these opportunities, as sea cucumbers derive substantial income from their high prices in international markets. .
Dr Abood Suleiman Jumbe, Permanent Secretary for Fisheries and Blue Economy, said the sea cucumber trade was long-standing, but in Zanzibar it was introduced in the 1960s. It was more traditionally practiced, the buyers being the country’s Chinese community, he told the gathering.
With the expansion of the sea cucumber trade in markets like Singapore and China, environmental advocacy organizations have come up with new strategies for sustainable sea cucumber farming, he said.
The cultivation of sea cucumber began in recent decades in 2011 in Fukuchani in the Unguja Nord region, where locals have noticed its benefits, he said, alluding to cucumber cultivation. sea as paying more than 100,000 / – per kilogram in foreign markets.
He congratulated the sea cucumber producers in Uzi Islands, Unguja Ukuu, Bungi and Mungoni for Unguja as well as Makombeni and Mtambwe in Pemba for showing capacity in this activity.
Some farmers mentioned challenges they face such as lack of education on the job, start-up capital, usable roads, farm safety, and proper farm equipment.