Friday, January 27, 2023

Fish supply in Malaysia has reduced to a critical level, Consumer Association calls out to authorities for urgent measures

NewsFish supply in Malaysia has reduced to a critical level, Consumer Association...

The supply of fish in Peninsular waters is now at a critical level and the authorities should take swift action against illegal fisheries to prevent the situation from worsening, warns the Consumers Association of Penang (CAP).

According to The Vibes, CAP president Mohideen Abdul Kader urged the Agriculture and Food Industries Ministry to pay serious attention to this matter as the issue will not only affect fishermen’s income but can also cause the extinction of fish resources in the near future. 

CAP said it has identified ‘pukat rawa sorong’, ‘pukat apollo’, ‘pukat siput’ and ‘bubu naga’ traps as the top trawlers and machinery that have threatened fish reproduction for over 40 years.

Source: Malay Mail

“The usage of bombs among fishermen in Sabah has led to the obsolescence of fish eggs and corals in the state’s waters,” he said.

In addition, he said fishermen from foreign nations, particularly Vietnam, have also invaded the East Coast and stole produce with their trawlers, resulting in RM4.25 billion in losses per year for Malaysia.

“Every day, thousands of tonnes of sea life’s eggs are destroyed due to the heavy usage of trawlers.”

“A single trawler is able to catch and kill over 60% of baby fish that cannot be eaten or marketed,” he elaborated.

Meanwhile, Mohideen also said that the produce and income from local fishermen have reduced by over 50% over the years. He said consumers then had to foot the bill for the increased prices of fish in markets.

“Since the 1980s, CAP has protested and offered numerous suggestions to the government regarding this issue, including tightening laws and banning trawlers in order to prevent aquatic life from extinction.”

“We worry that the nation’s sea resources will only last for 30 more years if uncontrolled fishing continues,” he said.

Mohideen then called for the authorities to ban the use of trawlers to guarantee sufficient food sources for the future.

According to the Fisheries Department, the supply of fish in Peninsular Malaysia has reached a critical level after recording the biomass of current demersal fisheries, where only 4.4% is left as compared to 60 years ago.

The research that was conducted in 2016 found that supplies for demersal fishes including croakers, threadfins, purple-spotted bigeyes, prawns, and squids have depleted from 743,345 metric tonnes to only 21,002 metric tonnes.

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