Building Robust Aquatic Food Systems in Sub-Saharan Africa

  • Funded by the Norwegian Agency for Development Cooperation (Norad), the Development and Scaling of Sustainable Feeds for Resilient Aquatic Food Systems in Sub-Saharan Africa (FASA) project is a five-year initiative that aims to produce low-cost, and highly nutritious aquatic foods with new ingredients;
  • The project is expected to benefit 5,000 smallholder aquatic food producers in Nigeria, Kenya and Zambia, with the ultimate goal of building their resilience, increasing their incomes and improving food security;
  • CORAF is an implementing partner of the project through the National Center of Specialization on Aquaculture, based in Nigeria.

A new agreement signed between WorldFish and the Norwegian Agency for Development Cooperation (Norad) aims to produce low-cost and highly nutritious aquatic foods using new ingredients in Nigeria, Kenya and Zambia.

Named the Development and Scaling of Sustainable Feeds for Resilient Aquatic Food Systems in Sub-Saharan Africa (FASA) project, it is funded to the tune of 80 million Norwegian kroner, which is about 8 million USD, and will last five years.

Five thousand smallholder fish feed producers are targeted by the project in the three countries, 30% of whom are women and 40% are youth, according to WordFish.

“One of the current major challenges for the aquaculture sector in the sub-region is the availability of quality feed for fish. In addition to having a high climate footprint, the feed is often expensive, scarce and not easily accessible to smallholders,” remarks Professor Niéyidouba Lamien, Program Manager at CORAF.

“The FASA project will enable aquafeed producers to provide farmers in the target countries with sustainable, nutrient-dense and low-cost fish feed, which will help to significantly increase the incomes of all actors in the aquaculture value chain in the region,” he says.

Ultimately, it is expected that the technologies generated under the project will be scaled up to other sub-Saharan African countries.  

In doing so, the project intends to contribute to building resilient aquatic food systems in the sub-region.

Empowering the National Center of Specialization on Aquaculture

The implementing partners include, in addition to CORAF, the International Centre of Insect Physiology and Ecology (ICIPE), the Swedish University of Agricultural Sciences, Aller Aqua (Zambia), the Natural Resources Development College, local feed millers and farmer groups.

CORAF is involved in the FASA project through the National Center of Specialization (NCoS) on Aquaculture, based in Nigeria.

The NCoS on aquaculture is one of the nine NCoS and RCoEs that have been set up under the West Africa Agricultural Productivity Program (WAAPP), implemented by CORAF.

“Concretely, the project will support the NCoS on aquaculture to conduct research and develop innovative aquatic foods that meet the users’ needs and enable them to increase their incomes and build their resilience,” says Professor Lamien. 

The targeted species in this research are tilapia and catfish, which are among the most consumed species in sub-Saharan Africa.