HI Robert, thank you for you questions and warm remarks. Allow me to answer your questions one by one:
1) The domestic fish market in 2015 in Tanzania produced 362,645.30 metric tons and valued at $780,000,000. Fish production in 2015 in Tanzania was 362,645.30 metric tons and valued at $780,000,000. Down slightly from 2013 production of 375,160 metric tons, imports have been increasing linearly since 2013 to cope with 3% population growth and effects of climate change and overfishing. With a 3% population increase from 2013 there needs to be a 51,216 and 108,521tons of excess fish production by 2018 and 2023 respectively to maintain the current annual consumption of 7kg per capita.
93% of warming temperatures are absorbed by the worlds water bodies. A recent scientific study published in the journal "Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences" shows that rising temperatures have been responsible for significant declines in the fish being caught in Lake Tanganyika. The effects are further amplified by overfishing which threatening the already fragile eco system in the lakes. Overfishing, which has led the Food and Agriculture Organization to find that the average Nile perch caught has dropped from 50kg in the 1980s to less than 10kg today in Lake Victoria.
2)Data from the 2010 Tanzania Demographic and Health Survey was analysed to understand the association and difference in fish and meat consumption based on geography, household wealth, and degree of food insecurity. Rural households within the poorest wealth quintile consumed fish on average almost three times more frequently than meat during the week before the survey. Rural households that experienced food insecurity in the previous year were more dependent on fish than meat. These findings suggest that poorer and more food insecure depend more strongly on fish as a protein source. This is due to the number of water bodies around Tanzania. A long cost and 3 big lakes makes Fish a go to protein source. Chicken is the next protein choice in Tanzania but keeping Chicken has a lot of challenges in Tanzania. The dominant challenge is that Tanzania does not have a reliable Cold Supply Chain. This is need to store vaccines and other medicines, in cold temperatures, which are needed in livestock keeping. At the moment due to this factor chicken is a substitute is not a challenge. There is a gab which our youth can fill and earn income and necessary entrepreneurial skills.
3) We are targeting to be based in Bagamoyo which is 60km from the main city of Dar es Salaam. The reason for this choice is the cost of land and access to the youth of Dar es Salaam where Youth unemployment is 28%.
Land is very expensive in Dar es Salaam and we have had to move outside it find a big enough area for a large Aquaponics system at a reasonable price. Moringa leaf powder after processing can be stored in dry vacuum sealed bags and has a shelf life of 6 month. It is then exported through the Dar es Salaam International Airport. Fish, for the Youth to get the best possible price, needs to be fresh. These two factors helped us decided to stay as close as possible to Dar es Salaam.
Targeting and selling will be the focus of the Youth led cooperative. We are looking at what training we can give but the act of customer profiling and selling are the necessary activities needed to be undertaken by the Youth in order for them to gain entrepreneurial skills.
4) The impact of the surrounding Rural Community where our plant will be located is something we are looking to incorporate. As I write Sandra is talking to village elders to see if they will be willing for Moringa to supplied to their children.
UNICEF found that in Tanzania stunting currently affects 42 per cent of under five children, and is only a two percentage points lower than it was five years ago. The burden of stunting in Tanzania ranks third in Sub-Saharan Africa, after Ethiopia and the Democratic Republic of Congo. Moringa is a super food an gram for gram beats Spinach for Iron and Calcium in Milk. There is a great advantage to the children in advocating for its use in Tanzania.
Please do let me know if I have answered you questions fully. I look forward to all forms of commenting. If you have suggestions on how to improve the idea I am also open.
Hi Gary, Thank you for your comments and question!
The word "Youth" is generally termed to define someone ebtween 15 - 35 years of age. This is really a broad definition and we will narrow it further by specifying 22 -35 years of age. We are really targetting the youth who have left tertiary education, whether vocational or University, and are looking for a Job. Searching for a job while fresh out of school is a stressfully activity in any country but especially in Tanzania where there is only around 60,000 new jobs created every year.
We will target the youth who show entreprenueral spirit & skills and have leadership qualities. This is a very delicate process and needs to be correct form the start as these ealier adapters will in a way set the tone for the rest of the cooperative. We are talking to a local NGO and the Tanzania Vocational Education Training Authority to find the targeted Group.
We are in dialogue with the Tanzania Fisheries Research Institute and the Ministry of Agriculture, Livestock and Fisheries to source Tilapia Eggs. They are accessible in Tanzania. Upon our research of Tilapia we found that tilapia grow well in a pH of 6 and live well with the Nitrifying Bacteria in a range between 7 - 8. It would be advisable to have nusery ponds until they reach ideal weight and then trasnfer them to the aquaponics system.
A fish and plant nursery will be ideal for maximum output inorder to get a better rate of return on investment and also to provide the youth in our cooperative good standard fish.
Your question is something I and the Team at DeFea have been looking at. Morings is indeed a "new" plant in the export market. It's demand is slowly increasing which is encouraging. The 2014 organic report valued it at $4 billion. Saying this, Aquaponics is an organic hydroponic method. This makes our target market the organic market. Latest statistics put the US organic market at $24 billion and Europe somewhere around $22 billion. Giving opportunities to grow a variety of other organic high value medicinal plants like Saffron, Vanilla, Aloe Vera or even Basil. These are "old" plants in the export market and their market price is high but stable. This gives us plenty of opportunity to shift with the organic market demands.
The most important thing in an Aquaponics system is the balance in the system. The pH level is of crucial importance. A fish like Tilapi, which has a high value in Tanzania, is resilient to a wide pH range. making the fish very ideal to grow with a wide range of plants.