The American Soybean Association’s (ASA) World Initiative for Soy in Human Health (WISHH) program and the Pakistan Fisheries Development Board have started the "FEEDing Pakistan" program.
The U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) is supporting the three-year effort that will assist Pakistan in using U.S. soybean meal to make high-protein fish feeds. CEO of Pakistan’s Fisheries Development Board Faisal Iftikhar and ASA/WISHH Country Representative R.S.N. Janjua signed a memorandum of understanding on November 18, 2011 in Islamabad.
FEEDING Pakistan is a $1.5-million USDA Foreign Agricultural Service initiative that will use 25 metric tons of U.S. high-protein soybean meal for feeding trials in Pakistan. Other elements of the program include:
--Assessment of the Pakistani fish farming industry
--Feeding trials to demonstrate the results of fish feed formulations
--Cooperate with Kansas State University in training courses on fish feed manufacturing and best management as well as technical assistance to industry stakeholders, such as feed manufacturers and farmers.
November 2013 Update
A Farmers’ Field Day was held in Muzzafar Garh, Pakistan as part of the USDA-funded FEEDing Pakistan program. The owner of the Tawakkal Fish Hatchery & Fish Farms, where the event was held, participated in a two-week aquaculture training course at Kansas State University earlier this year. He brought the knowledge he gained at the course back to Pakistan where he invested in tilapia production. Muzzafar Garh is home to one of the largest clusters of fish farming in Pakistan.
More than 75 guests attended the event and were impressed at the size of the tilapia. The Director General of the Punjab Fisheries Department helped host the event where participants discussed best management practices for aquaculture as well as the value of soy-based, extruded, floating fish feed.
July 2013 Update
This month the World Initiative for Soy in Human Health (WISHH) program hosted three Farmer Field Day Events in Pakistan as part of the USDA-funded FEEDing Pakistan program. With support from the Kansas Soybean Commission, WISHH brought Ram Bhujel, a tilapia expert from the Asian Institute of Technology in Thailand, to present at the field days.
Building upon last year’s successful tilapia feeding demonstrations under FEEDing Pakistan, Pakistani fish farmers have imported more than 1.5 million tilapia fry from Thailand this year. More than 150 progressive fish farmers and fisheries department staff participated in the field days. Bhujel was also able to provide vital one-on-one technical assistance to a select group of famers and technical staff, building local capacity through the transfer of knowledge. Through the seminars and consultations Bhujel was able to stress the valuable role soy plays in aquaculture around the world.
WISHH partner Oryza is currently producing soy-based floating fish feed in Pakistan with imported U.S. soybean meal. The feed is the first of its kind produced in the country.
April 2013 Update
In March, WISHH’s 25MT shipment of U.S. hi-pro soybean meal was delivered to our partner, Oryza Organics, outside of Lahore. Oryza’s extrusion equipment, which they purchased with ASA/WISHH support from Extru-Tech International in Sabetha, Kansas, has also arrived at the port in Karachi. The extrusion equipment and soybean meal will be utilized by local WISHH partner Oryza Organics in the production of floating fish feed as part of the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA)-funded project. The feed produced by Oryza will be the first of its kind produced locally in Pakistan.
The FEEDing Pakistan project was recently featured in a report by the USDA Foreign Agricultural Service through the Global Agricultural Information Network (GAIN). ASA/WISHH’s three year project, funded by USDA, has shown measurable results in aquaculture industry development. The GAIN Report gave an overview of the project and highlighted the potential for an increase in U.S. soybean meal exports to Pakistan to be used for fish feed production. The report forecasts a 525 percent increase in aquaculture production in Pakistan, and an increase in demand for soybean meal from 42,000 tons to 260,000 tons.
September 20, 2012 Update
In September, ASA’s WISHH entered into a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) with Oryza Organics (PVT) LTD, a feed production company located just outside of Lahore. The signing of the MOU marks an important step in WISHH’s three-year "FEEDing Pakistan" program aimed at improving capacity, productivity and quality in the Pakistani aquaculture sector with a focus on high quality fish feed produced with imported U.S. soybean meal.
WISHH will assist Oryza in purchasing an extruder capable of producing floating fish feed with imported U.S. soybean meal. Currently there are no commercial fish feeds produced in Pakistan so this project will help fill a crucial gap in the aquaculture industry. Tilapia feeding demonstrations are currently in place throughout Pakistan to highlight the value of high quality fish feeds, and WISHH will be shipping a container of U.S. soybean meal to Pakistan for fish feed production in the coming months.
Read USDA Blog to learn more about how USDA Foreign Agricultural Service is supporting this effort.