Although fish is culturally acceptable and considered ‘Halaal’, Somalia’s per capita consumption of fish is one of the lowest in the world. Fish is a relatively easy to access for large sections of the population.

Despite having the second longest coastline in Africa, Somalia’s fishing industry remains largely underdeveloped and its fisheries unexploited. This is partly due to decades of conflict and piracy on the high seas – but also because fish does not form part of the traditional Somali diet.

The country is still emerging from a food security crisis following the drought and famine of 2011 that left many thousands dead.
The main reasons for low consumption are limited availability, high cost and general lack of knowledge, skills and equipment’s for preservation and storage.

SMDC, with the support of the German international development agency GIZ, organised a one-day roadshow on Wednesday, 24 October 2018, in Kismayo, Somalia, to encourage families living in and around the coastal city to start including fish in their diets.

SMDC partnered with GIZ to raise awareness about the nutritional benefits of eating fish and appropriate methods for preparing and preserving fish among returning refugees, internally displaced persons & vulnerable residents of the southern Somali coastal city of Kismayo.

Despite having second longest coastline in Africa, Somalia’s per capita consumption of fish is one of the lowest in the world. Fish is a relatively easy to access for large sections of the population.

The GIZ is also developing markets with sales outlets for fish products as well as counselling centres that provide advice on nutrition to mothers with infants and pregnant women in the city.
Initial measures to promote fish consumption have caught the attention of the population and even encouraged older people to change their eating habits.

The fisheries working group launched by GIZ is an example of putting the principle of effective help to practice. This working group brings together representatives of responsible authorities, NGOs and other development partners to create strategies, coordinate their own activities, improve efficiency and foster synergies through targeted consultation.

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