, NAIROBI, Kenya, Nov 27- A fish processing factory with a capacity to handle over 20,000 kilograms per day has been set up in Tunyai area, Tharaka-Nithi County.
The Mt Kenya Fish Company is targeting tilapia, catfish and trout farmers in Tharaka-Nithi, Embu, Meru and Isiolo Counties.
Speaking at Chuka Stadium during an event to popularise fish farming in the area, factory manager Joseph Gichuru said they will start buying the produce in January.
He said the factory would extend credit facilities to farmers so they can purchase fingerlings, feeds and general maintenance so they can repay after harvesting.
Gichuru said the company was working with farmers in the area to help them boost productivity ahead of the guaranteed ready market.
“We will be requiring at least 20 tonnes of fish per day. You will already have a market and no fish can go to waste. The challenge is on you to supply us with the fish,” he told farmers.
Chuka-Igamba Ng’ombe legislator Muthomi Njuki said his constituency had been identified by the fisheries department as among 10 constituencies countrywide to receive Sh5 million each to boost fish farming and eating culture.
He said the money would be used to build fish collection centres and installing deep freezers.
“Fish is currently cheaper than goat meat and has higher nutritive value. Many people say fish eating is just for people in Nyanza. Fish contains essential nutrients that help the brain,” he said.
Njuki urged the county government to provide irrigation water to farmers so they can reap maximum benefit from fish rearing.
Tharaka-Nithi fisheries director Stephen Gichunge said the area was already leading in fish production and the produce could rise since it has many permanent rivers that could be utilized for fish rearing.