Enabling the freshwater fish culture champions of Cambodia to pull through difficult times
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The freshwater aquaculture sub-sector has been playing a crucial role in the economic development of Cambodia as well as in enhancing the livelihoods of the country’s rural people. Thus, the country has been exerting efforts to maintain the pace of its freshwater aquaculture development through a steady supply of locally-produced and quality fish seeds, and eliminate dependence of aquaculture on wild seeds through the development of sustainable fish seed production technologies. Nonetheless, the country’s aquaculture development has encountered impediments that include inadequate supply of water especially in major aquaculture provinces and insufficient numbers of nursery ponds that limit production of fish seeds in large quantities. The limited number of quality broodstocks also contributes to the instability of fish seed supply while poor water quality management in grow-out ponds leads to low production yield, affecting the country’s aquaculture development thrusts. Left alone, stakeholders of the country’s freshwater aquaculture sub-sector are unable to address these concerns for lack of resources among other things. Therefore, it would be necessary for the Government to continue providing support to the country’s fish seed producers and fish grow-out farmers, because with sufficient support, the roles in and contributions of these stakeholders to the sustainable development of freshwater aquaculture of the country could be enhanced. A glimpse of the lives of these important stakeholders through their socio-economic profiles are summarized in this article while recommendations are offered with the hope that the Government would take a closer look at these stakeholders and help them pull through difficult times so that they could enhance their contribution to the sustainable development of the country’s freshwater aquaculture sub-sector.