May 30, 2020 +91-44-24618817, 24616948

ICAR-CIBA extends support to fish farmers by producing and supplying Seebassplus feed during COVID-19 lockdown

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One of the sector which badly affected by the COVID-19 lockdown has been the bracksihwater aquaculture sector, where supply of seed, feed and other farm inputs was disrupted. Among the several inputs for farming the fish, feed is a critical input, which needs to be sourced from the feed mills located far away places from the farm site, involving large trailers and small delivery vehicles. The countrywide lockdown from 25 March to 17 May 2020 had severely impacted this supply chain, though aqua feed is listed under exemption category. The disruption in the supply chain of fish feed put the fish farmers on a challenging situation in feeding the fishes and maintain them in the farm till harvest. Realizing this unforeseen situation, CIBA has made initiatives to reach out o the farmers and extended the support. Seabass farmers who are in need of species specific quality feed left with no other choice and sought support of CIBA for seabass feed. Realising the scenario, CIBA has initiated inhouse production of seabass feed during the lockdown at the pilot scale feed mill at Muttukkadu experimental station, and initiated supplying the Seebassplus feed to the small and medium farmers on actual cost basis. Under the lockdown situation, CIBA also made contingency plans to manufacture feed for shrimp and other brackishwater fishes, strictly adhering to the guidelines of MOHFW on social distancing and personal hygiene. CIBA reached out to the farmers through tele services and social media, and the feeds processed were provided to the farmers on the first-come, first-serve basis. Seabass farmers who contacted CIBA during the the lockdown period were able to salvage the seabss stocked in the cages and thanked ICAR-CIBA for the timely help. We have also provided feeds for shrimp, milkfish, pearlspot, and ornamental fishes. At the Kakdwip Centre of CIBA too supplied the formulated fish feeds to the needy farmers in the sunderban area of West Bengal. As an addition to the list, CIBA recently announced a homemade formulated feed to maintain the fishes in the home aquariums during this lockdown. Nutrition and feed R&D facility of CIBA located at Muttukadu, near Chennai have, state-of-the-art pilot-scale feed processing equipment such as pellet mill, twin-screw extruder, vacuum coater, spheronizer, spray drier, and assorted grinders for the manufacture of functional and growout feeds for farmed shellfishes and finfishes.