Dar says DA to import 60,000 MT of small pelagic fishes
MANILA, Philippines — The Department of Agriculture will import 60,000 metric tons of small pelagic fishes for the first quarter of 2022, Secretary William Dar said Tuesday.
“So, I just signed yesterday a certificate of the need to import for this first quarter the amount of 60,000 metric tons of small pelagic fishes to be imported for this quarter of the year,” he said during the Laging Handa briefing.
According to Dar, data from the Bureau of Fisheries and Aquatic Resources (BFAR) showed that the country has a potential deficit of 119,000 metric tons of small pelagic fishes during this period.
He also said that the capacity of fishers to catch should be enhanced after the onslaught of Typhoon Odette (international name: Rai), the strongest tropical cyclone that hit the country in 2021.
Dar further noted that fish gives a significant contribution to inflation.
He then said he ordered DA’s attached agencies, the BFAR, and the Philippine Fisheries Development Authority (PFDA) to bring round scads to wet markets to address the issue of fish supply.
“So, I have directed the Bureau of Fisheries and Aquatic Resources with the PFDA to see to it that these imported galunggong (round scads) must reach the wet markets as is the case because that’s the reason why we are bringing additional supply augmentation,” he said, noting that most of the fishes are in cold storages and do not reach markets,”
“So, the Bureau of Fisheries and Aquatic Resources has the power to open up these cold warehouses and see to it that these have to be brought to the wet markets,” he added.