NGO blames drop in aquaculture production on PAP imports ban

By Eileen Mencias

Tugon Kabuhayan, a nongovernment organization advocating for food security and sustainable food production, has blamed the decline in aquaculture production in the second quarter on the import ban on processed animal proteins (PAPs) which was recently lifted by the Department of Agriculture.

The DA lifted the ban on the condition that PAPs would be used only for the aquaculture feeds.

Tugon Kabuhayan convernor Aziz Perez said the ban in imported PAPs had a direct effect on fish production because the growth of fish was stunted when they did not get the nutrition they needed.

The NGO has been pushing for the importation of PAPs but it was disallowed by the previous administration in January. Perez said 70 percent of the PAPs come from Italy which is also affected by the African Swine Fever.

Feedmix VP and Tugon Kabuhayan convenor Norbert Chingcuangco said PAP is a key ingredient in the production of feeds in aquaculture and cannot be replaced.

He said PAPs are processed at high temperatures that kill all forms of bacteria and viruses.

Chingcuangco said fish cages in Malalag, Davao Oriental are only 70 percent full which means that the decline in fish production is not yet over and there is a rush to secure the supply of PAP so that production can catch up.

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