Fish Quality and Safety Workshop

ZIZ News — Fishers, Fishery Officers and other stakeholders in the Fishing Industry in St Kitts and Nevis gathered at the Old Road Fisheries Complex for the strengthening of fisher folk organization on fish quality and safety workshop surrounding the proper handling of fish.

Director of Marine Resources Marc Williams says one of the most successful methods of fishing in recent times is through the use of fads – fish aggregating devices.

However, he says this has also raised certain issues. “Over 170,000 pounds have been caught by our fish aggregating devices. These fads have led to concerns in terms of fish quality and fish handling and fish safety.”

Minister Responsible for Fisheries, Hon Nigel Carty added that the workshop is essentially geared towards ensuring public safety when consuming fish.   “Today’s workshop on good fish quality, hygiene and safety addresses the need for the improvement of the way in which fishers and fish processors handle fish throughout its value chain. Essentially it is about how you manage the product from beginning to end so that you have an assurance that the local fish in our homes, restaurants, bars, and supermarkets are safe for human consumption.”

He also explained the importance of having the voice of local fishers heard when making decisions that ultimately affect their livelihoods. “It is strongly felt in some quarters that fishers have not been given the opportunity to be involved in critical decision making. This speaks to I believe on one hand for governments to be more open to the involvement of fishers in decision making and also the need for fishers to unveil themselves in the processes of consultation and collective decision making.”

Minister Carty says this is the third in a series of workshops funded by the food and agriculture organization (FAO).

The first workshop, which focused on ecosystems approach to fisheries management, was held in 2010.

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