TAIPING, June 10 — The Department of Fisheries (DoF) is urging young fishermen throughout the country to explore the downstream industry in the fisheries sector to help strengthen their (fishermen) income.

Its deputy director-general (Development) Bohari Leng said in addition to catching seafood, fishermen can take advantage of aquaculture activities as well as produce downstream products to help them (fishermen) get out of the cocoon of poverty.

He said the involvement of young fishermen is very important to the country’s fisheries sector especially in the DoF’s efforts to ensure a sustainable national food security.

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“We are aware that there are young fishermen who do not want to stay long onboard, so they can venture into the aquaculture sector which offers job opportunities in such areas as caged-fish breeding, seed hatching and others.

“The same goes for the downstream industry which is growing at the moment, for example, making keropok (fish crackers), dried fish and others because the fishing industry is not only focused on catching fish but can be developed by running a seafood processing business,” he said in a press conference here today.

He said this after handing over DoF Delivery System and Extention Support Services (SPeKS) programme assistance to the myKomuniti Perikanan (myKP) of Kampung Dew near here. The event was also attended by Perak DoF director Mohd Ghazali A Manap.

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Bohari said the DoF always encourages fishermen to conduct downstream businesses as these are actually close to them because their catch can be used to process food products for sale.

“The government encourages agrofood to be cultivated by providing various incentives including allocations provided through budget initiatives for this group,” he also said. — Bernama