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News 664 views last update:6 Aug 2012

“Build local feed mill to spare fish farmers high costs”

Suhana, a marine biologist at the Bogor Institute of Agriculture (IPB) in Indonesia, said feed prices had risen to Rp 256,000 ($27) per 50-kilogram bag, below the break-even level for farmers.

“If the price is more than Rp 200,000 ($21.40) per bag, fish farmers will lose,” Suhana said, adding that feed accounted for 80% of production costs.
 
Shrimp farmers are also complaining, with shrimp feed selling for Rp 10,000 ($1.07) a kilogram, about 15% higher than the price on the international market, Suhana said.
 
Build local feed mills
To cope with high feed prices, Suhana said the government should build local feed mills to bring down prices because about 40% of feed ingredients are imported, such as soybean meal.
 
“Growers in Riau built their own mills and produce the feed, which sells for Rp 100,000 (%10.70) per 50 kilogram bag,” Suhana said. “It’s certainly more affordable.”
 
Cutting import duties
The Ministry of Maritime Affairs and Fisheries proposed cutting import duty on feed ingredients. Syamsul Maarif, the ministry’s secretary general, said the tariff was burdening domestic fish and shrimp cultivators by making feed more expensive.
 
But Suhana said cutting the 5% import duty was not a solution because the price remained high and was vulnerable to currency fluctuations.

Dick Ziggers

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