About 16 agricultural extension officers from five counties in Liberia have benefited from a two-day capacity building training of trainers workshop on improved rice fish farm technology.
The training was aimed at educating the extension officers on how to improve quality rice seed and food-fish production in Liberia. The beneficiaries were from Bong, Maryland, River Gee, Grand Gedeh, and Gbarpolu Counties.
It was conducted at the Central Agricultural Research Institute (CARI) in Suakoko, Bong County by World Fish, an international non-profit research and innovation organization that works to reduce hunger, malnutrition and poverty across Africa, Asia and the Pacific.
DeSIRA integrated rice fish farming system
Africa Rice Liberia and World Fish are currently implementing the EU funded DeSIRA integrated rice fish farming system project in collaboration with the Ministry of Agriculture, and the National Fisheries and Aquaculture Authority (NaFAA). For over 45 years now, World Fish has worked on sustainable aquaculture and fishing has improved the lives of millions of women, men, and youth.
Fish and rice are major components of the Liberian diet, Liberia is blessed with all it needs to produce enough rice and fish, but unfortunately, the country continues to import rice and fish on a large scale.
Liberia spends about 200 million on importing its staple food, while it also spends about 40 million on importing fish annually. Speaking during the workshop, Dr. Inoussa Akintayo also believes that Liberia has huge potential to produce more fish and rice, adding that the current fish-rice farming project is aimed at reducing Liberia’s rice and fish imports.
According to Akintayo, the EU’s integrated rice fish farming system has been designed to correct such an unfortunate situation in the country. He said the workshop was important for extension officers because it intends to drill them on seeds and feed as well as the use of farm-made feeds for brood stock.
“The EU integrated rice fish farming system is going to create another opportunity for many young people in Liberia, especially recent university graduates, who will want to take advantage of such an opportunity. Most young people should now see the EU’s integrated rice fish farming system as an opportunity for themselves,” said Akintayo.