Srinagar: Jammu and Kashmir administration has set 9000 metric tonnes fish production target this year.
Official figures reveal that fish production in the union territory has touched 24,000 MT last year. “We want production to increase from 24000 MT to 33,000MT by the end of 2022,” said an official.
In Kashmir, fish production particularly trout have already witnessed an increase of more than 50 percent last year. “Our annual trout production has increased to 1400 MTs. From 650 MT. 400 new units have come up last year,” said Director Fisheries department Bashir Ahmad Bhat.
He said the latest technologies including Biofloc and Re-circulatory Aquaculture systems (RAS) have been introduced for intensive fish rearing units.
“Latest technologies have been included to revolutionize the pisciculture in Jammu and Kashmir. Biofloc is a profitable method of fish farming. This technology helps to convert toxic materials such as Ammonia, Nitrate, and Nitrite into fish feed,” he said.
Bhat said that the department is focusing on boosting trout culture through RAS technology in Kashmir.
“This technology is a new entrant in pisciculture. Trout requires two parameters. The optimum temperature should be between 8 and14 degree Celsius and oxygen 8mg/L. Under RAS technology, we are using underground bore well water, which meets both these parameters,” he said.
J&K is the leading trout producer in the country and accounts for about 71% of the production. Official figures reveal that there are around 15500 fishermen in Jammu and Kashmir.
As per the official data, 13.25 million trout seeds and 62.50 million carp/other seeds are also produced in Kashmir every year.
To make trout accessible to consumers throughout the country and outside, the Fisheries department is mulling to establish fish processing and packaging units across J&K. “Like any other state, Jammu and Kashmir too will start exporting fish to different sates of country and abroad,” an official said.
Pertinently, Jammu and Kashmir is all set to introduce American and Vietnamese fishes to boost pisciculture and improve livelihood in the valley. Pangasius and Pacu will be cultured by the department this year.