Andhra Pradesh: Aquatic centers set to breathe life into national fish market

Ministry of Fisheries signs MoU with Bank of Baroda to support entrepreneurs

Ministry of Fisheries signs MoU with Bank of Baroda to support entrepreneurs

A poor marketing infrastructure, combined with an unhygienic sales process, has deterred foodies from patronizing Chapala Pulusu – a Nellore signature dish – in large numbers compared to states like West Bengal and Kerala.

Identifying the reasons for the low sales, the Department of Fisheries has developed an innovative scheme to promote state-of-the-art aquaculture hubs and develop a tight domestic market and increase fish consumption to at least 15-25 kg per capita from five to seven kg. per capita now.

“Without good marketing infrastructure, the demand for fish in mountain areas also remains untapped. In such a situation, four aqua hubs are being promoted at Nellore, Atmakur, Kavali and Gudur at a cost of ₹8 crore to promote aqua products under the brand ‘Fish Andhra, Fit Andhra’,” says Mr. Nageswara Rao, Joint Director of the Department of Fisheries.

“The department has entered into a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with Bank of Boroda (BoB) to promote 200-250 units attached to each Aquatic Center costing ₹2 lakh each with marketing infrastructure in the district,” says Mr. Rao .

Under the Pradhan Mantri Matsya Sampada Yojana (PMMSY), “ready to eat” stores with cold stores are also being promoted in the coastal district which produced over 5.08 lakh tons of aquatic products including fish. An entrepreneur wanting to set up a unit need only invest ₹30 lakh while BoB would provide a soft loan of ₹1.70 lakh for each unit attached to the water hub.

V. Padma, one of the women to start mini retail outlets in the district, said the scheme devised by the department has paved the way for unemployed youths like her to earn a living.

Another entrepreneur named Krishna Reddy from Dhanalakshmipuram in the city said he sells not only fish but also crab and prawns at his modern outlet.

The mini retail outlet has provided me with a golden opportunity to live with dignity, said another entrepreneur, Mr. Mujeeb from Kovur.

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