The  Indonesia Project - Fish Against Poverty

The Indonesian project 'Fish Against Poverty' is all about fighting poverty with real world ECO solutions. This project is not about collecting funds and give them to central or local authorities. It is about helping the farmers themselves with practical and proven methods. Farmers will benefit most of this project and it is through the combined succes of many farmers that in time a ROI (Return On Investment) can be expected. When succes is actually spreading, the ROI will grow exponentially. We at Fish Techknowledge know this project can actually work. We have studied all aspects and understand all procedures that are involved in managing such a provound and yet simple integration of farming types. This integration is not new to many farmers around the world but as with many things that are forgotten people need to see and remember what farming is all about.

It is important to realize that real sustainability in farming shows its advantages only over time. Recognizing interesting and promising projects to fight poverty is therefore not an easy task. If we look at our present situation worldwide it is obvious that enough food produced in a sustainable way is becoming a huge problem. However, dispite the fact that all elements in this projects are easy to understand it nevertheless takes a more social investor to start off this project and make it a succes.

Fish Techknowledge is therefore proposing the introduction of sustainable culture of catfish in South East Asia and particularly in Java, Indonesia. We have a good business plan in which you can read all details. We have defined two goals but we realize we should not be limited by putting goals into words only. The real goals are always live in the field. Nevertheless:

1. The introduction – in Indonesia – of sophisticated techniques enabling efficient production of catfish (Clarias) for human consumption. High emphasis is put on education, cooperation, hygiene and efficiency. We wish to farm & culture catfish in a sustainable way with respect to effluents: minerals from fish culture to be used as fertilizers in vegetable production.

2. At this moment it is expected that € 0,80 per kilo (sales) can easily be realized. This enables a yearly income of € 4.000,-  per year from a area of 300 m2 (the minimum being 100m2). A higher income will cause - as a flywheel – a further economical development of rural Java.


young clarias


Why is controlled fishfarming important?
There is ONE thing driving the current fish farm boom that stands alone: population growth. But there are other equaly important reasons:
1. Oceans are polluted and over-fished and supply of seafood from the ocean is rapidly declining.
2. There is a high demand for high quality food. Consumers want consistency in quality, safety and availability at the right price.
3. Good quality of fish is a very healthy supplement to the daily diet and gives us the Omega-3 fatty oils.

And there are more issues that touch on how we deal with our environment like protein conversion and water.  At this point, the efficiency with which cattle and fish convert grain into protein begins to reshape production trends and thus our diets. Cattle require some 7 kilograms of grain to add 1 kilogram of live weight, whereas fish can add a kilogram of live weight with less than 2 kilograms of grain. Water scarcity is also a matter of concern since it takes 1,000 tons of water to produce 1 ton of grain. But the fish farming advantage in the efficiency of grain conversion translates into a comparable advantage in water efficiency as well, even when the relatively small amount of water for fish ponds is included. In a world of land and water scarcity, the advantage of fish ponds over feedlots in producing low-cost animal protein is clear.

Current production
Over the last century, the world relied heavily on two natural systems (oceanic fisheries and rangelands) to satisfy a growing demand for animal protein, but that era is ending as both systems are reaching their productive limits. As stated before, aquacultural output, is growing at more than 11 percent a year over the past decade. It was the fastest growing sector of the world food economy and is allready larger than traditional cattle farming. Climbing from 13 million tons of fish produced in 1990 it is expected to exceed 45 million tons in 2007. Most of this production comes from developing countries.
In 1970, fish farms only produced 4 percent of the world’s seafood. Today that has grown to over 31 percent. Currently fish farming is the fastest-growing animal food-producing sector in the world and it is a $54 billion industry. And as it has grown, aquaculture has become an “A-list” environmental topic.

Known problems

  • Large number of confined fish are a breeding place for diseases that might also escape to the wild. Fish Techknowledge (FT) however has extensive experience with proper disease control techniques and procedures. FT also uses small ponds away from sea.
  • Escaped farmed fish might interbreed in the wild resulting in all sorts of problems. FT however uses small ponds (with recirculation systems) and no open sea farming. We also work with species that do not interbreed at all.
  • Fish farm waste can create "dead zones" in open sea if not handled properly. This is a big issue and FT uses all the fishes fecal matter for plant growth.
  • Some farmed fish eat too many other fish. FT uses the catfish Clarias and that is a vegetarian fish.


Paprika & Catfish Integration studies, The Netherlands


"Fish against Poverty" project

This project integrates fish farming with vegetable farming and small animal farming for Javanese farmers. There are specific issues that need to be considered in this project like animal welfare, hygiene, dissease control, fish food efficiency and effluent handling (fish waste). Even more important is the social interaction between all participants. Integrity, honesty and respect for the individual will be taken very seriously and this should not be underestimated because we are introducing intensive farming that is new to local farmers.

One final purpose in this project is to increase jobs and wellbeing of the Javanese people. Therefore part of this project is education (schools) and a management organization that will introduce and demonstrate modern fish farming techniques. Introduction of western techniques will stimulate:
1. Efficient production of consumer fish (clarias fuscus = ikan lele)
2. Creating opportunities to make a profit for the farmer. (Clarias is in HIGH demand in Indonesia, very popular dish ! )
3. Produce fish without antibiotics or any other chemicals.
4. Handle catfish (clarias) in a animal-friendly manner to reduce stress and therefore disease.
5. Integrate fish farming with plant farming in a CLOSED system. No polution, no dumping of waste and therefore a true sustainable ECO solution.
6. The opportunity to quickly grow the number of fish farmers once the first ones are shown to be succesful. This will grow exponentially and, hopefully, result in economic growth for the Indonesian people.

In Indonesia at least a 50.000 tons of catfish is farmed for human consumption. From own marketing investigation it is evident that the capital Jakarta has a demand for catfish of at least 50 tons a day, whereas no possibilities to supply exist.  Catfish (ikan lele) is well known in Java as a tasteful and healthy fish to consume but modern and sustainable ways to produce have hardly been introduced.

Advantages of our project:
1. Health. Recent research on human diet (prof. Hautvast, WUR, Wageningen, The Netherlands) indicates that consumption of fish is important for optimal development of human brains, with respect to availability of essential fatty acids, i.e. omega-3 fatty acids, typical in fish.
2. Environment. Harvesting fish is under pressure because of over-fishing seas and oceans. Integrating with vegetable/small animal farming causes a symbiotic environment less vulnerable to large mono cultures.
3. Population growth. In Indonesia human population is still growing.
4. Fighting poverty. Ca. 150 millions of Indonesians are unable to pay fish because of high price (most Indonesians earn ca 1 euro per day, one kg of fish costs at least 1 euro). Local farming makes cheap fish more affordable.
5. Modern techniques and local resources. Fish farming with modern techniques (as developed in The Netherlands) can be practiced in Indonesia because of low costs of labour, electricity and fish food.


Paprika & Catfish Integration Center, Perompong

Above mentioned statements indicate that fish farming offers an excellent tool for developing the economy of rural population of Indonesia (as it is in other developing countries). Fish Techknowledge will start the project ´Fish Against Poverty´ (FAP) by educating ca. 300 farmers, former rice farmers, around Klaten, by setting up a vocational, education centre, based on principle developed in The Netherlands. We project fish farmers to earn ca. euro 500 euro on a piece of land of 30 m2 , by producing ca. 5000 kg of catfish.

It is appreciated that students of Dutch vocational education centres will interact in this project thus cooperating with Indonesian students. This is allready been executed in the past years.

Here you find complete AQUAcultuur magazine editions as well as special articles specifically about fish farming in Indonesia.

Aqua2005maart  In this issue of AQUAcultuur you will find an article about the catfish farm Indramayu in Indonesia. We are visiting Cees Baay who lives on the north shores of Java.
Aqua2006okt In this issue of AQUAcultuur you will find an article about modernising fishfarms around Yogjakarta, Java.
Aqua2007dec  In this issue of AQUAcultuur you will find an article on the experience that came with the start of the central catfish farm in Klaten, Java.
Aqua2006aug  In this issue an article on our catfish farming introduction on Bali in 2006.
pdfpublish  Indonesian entrepreneurship.
Dutch article on Indonesian entrepreneurship.
This article will be published soon.
Nederlands artikel over Indonesisch ondernemersschap.
Dit artikel zal binnenkort worden gepubliceerd.
Aqua2009juninr3 In this issue an article on creating a productionline for the Tilapia in Bandung area Indonesia (Cimahi & Lembang).

Over Westers management en cultuuracceptatie.

About western management and cultural acceptance

Participants in the Project:

Joseph Scheerboom (Fish Techknowledge, The Netherlands)

Cees Baay (Integrated Farming Technologies, Cimah, Indonesia)

Kees Buskermolen (ProjectSolutions, The Netherlands)

Harry Willemsen (Integrity consultant, Haarlem, The Netherlands)

Reinhold Heus (FairCourt International, London, UK)

For more information please do contact us through the contact page.
Fish Techknowledge copyright 2014


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