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Thursday, February 2, 2023

WE’RE SORRY: Nile Perch Fish Exporters Apologize to Ugandans over Mpuuta Ban Proposal

The Uganda Fish Processors and Exporters Association (UFPEA) has apologized to Ugandans following condemnation of their proposal to ban the local consumption of Nile Perch (mpuuta) and to reserve the same for foreign markets.

Speaking to reporters after a meeting with the agriculture committee of Parliament recently, UFPEA chairperson Sujal Goswami proposed that Ugandans be banned from eating empuuta or Nile Perch, and ordered to concentrate on other types like Tilapia.

The committee is considering the Fisheries and Aquaculture Bill, 2021.

But Goswami’s proposal was greeted with criticism from Ugandans.

On October 27, he led UFPEA to apologize to Ugandans.

“I would like to extend our sincere apologies to our stakeholders and the Ugandan public at large,” he said at a press conference in Kampala.

According to Goswami, UFPEA did not propose the ban during their interaction with the committee.

He went on to clarify that he only wanted to emphasize the need to protect Nile Perch and to regulate fish trade.

“[Unregulated fish trade] has [kicked] genuine local traders out of businesses and encouraged unlicensed traders who operate without any documents and no tracing where they sell the fish and fish maws,” said Goswami.

“We proposed that all players along the value chain be regulated and registered by the government.”

He emphasized: “If we are to safeguard the industry for economic development and employment, these need to be looked into and channelled through the industry, promote and protect Nile Tilapia which is a local delicacy for the increased populace whose demand for nutrition and food security is increasing.”

UFPEA vice chairman and Breeds, Feeds and Meats Ltd Managing Director Philip Borel de Bitche lauded Goswami for his apology and explained the difficulties faced in Nile Perch farming.

He said that farming mpuuta had so far failed since Nile Perch die even when fed on different feeds.

Pearl Times Reporter
Pearl Times Reporterhttps://pearltimes.co.ug
Latest Uganda news, politics, business, health and entertainment coverage.

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