For Immediate Release
On Friday, October 8th,a fish feed mill was officially reopened at Girkhbulag Fish Farm, just outside of Sheki. The United States Agency for International Development (USAID) provided a small grant supporting the rehabilitation of the feed mill to address the need of local fish farmers for high-quality trout and carp feed.
“USAID is proud to promote competitiveness in Azerbaijan through support to the aquaculture sector,” said Sheila Young, USAID’s Economic Growth Director. “The rehabilitation of the fish feed mill fosters the development of a new business in Azerbaijan, as well as the enhancement of the competitiveness of the aquaculture sector by allowing local fish farmers to locally procure, instead of import, a key input needed for the growth of their aquaculture businesses.”
For the past year, USAID’s Private Sector Competitiveness Enhancement Project (PSCEP) has provided extensive assistance to build the competitiveness of the aquaculture sector in Azerbaijan. The main barriers to growth for the aquaculture sector were outdated knowledge, and the lack of high quality fish eggs and fish feed. Assistance has specifically targeted these barriers by providing up-to-date international best practices for carp and trout farmers and by helping farmers combine resources to purchase high quality fish eggs. In 2009, with USAID technical assistance, farmers came together to facilitate a purchase of 500,000 fish eggs. In 2010, more farmers are expected to come together in order to purchase 1,000,000 high quality fish eggs, with USAID technical assistance. The new feed mill is a critical piece in USAID’s assistance to the aquaculture sector and will help ensure that farmers have the quality of feed needed to raise their fish.
“By contributing to the provision of good quality feed for fish, Girkhbulag’s improved feed mill is an important step in advancing Azerbaijan’s fish farming sector and a model we hope others will emulate. USAID’s PSCEP project is happy to be a partner in this effort. We wish the Girkhbulag operation and the Azerbaijan aquaculture industry much success and we look forward to significant increases in fish production and in the market as a result of these local efforts,” said Harvey Schartup, PSCEP Chief of Party.
USAID anticipates further assistance to support this nascent industry in the coming years through the recently announced Azerbaijan Competitiveness and Trade (ACT) project.
Last updated: December 10, 2013