Freshwater catfish producers in Myeik Township, Taninthayi Region, are now facing financial hardships due to the low demand for their products in the domestic market, said local fish producers.
The commercial production of freshwater catfish started in the township in mid-2017. Since then, the small-scale fish farms raised their productivity on a commercial scale. They got the species from fish farms in the Yangon Region. Earlier, the prices of catfish reached their peak of Ks6,000 per viss (3.6 lbs) when the demand for the same product was between 20 and 30 viss per day in the market.
The number of freshwater catfish producers is increasing in the township, whereas the demand for the same is decreasing significantly. Currently, the demand in the market is lower than the supply, and the prices of freshwater catfish have decreased rapidly by half in the market. According to retailers, catfish is currently sold for some Ks3,000 per viss.
U Htwe Nge, a fish farmer from Kyweku Village in Myeik Township, said his catfish
farming business came to a halt because of the lack of demand. Myeik Township is a coastal area and residents most frequently consume seafood. It is difficult to penetrate the market here for freshwater catfish producers.
Some fish farms in the township stopped their production of catfish due to the huge gap between profits and expenses.
Myint Oo (Myeik)