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59th Fish Con Week highlights food security through sustainable means

QUEZON CITY -- A year away from its diamond jubilee anniversary, the annual Fish Conservation Week has returned to pre-pandemic celebration as the Department of Agriculture’s Bureau of Fisheries and Aquatic Resources reinstated on-site activities for the fisheries sector and the general public to take part of.

The DA-BFAR, the lead government agency in conservation and protection of the country’s fisheries resources, has centered these activities around a more important message, which happens to be this year’s Fish Con theme: “Pagkain ng Bansa Siguruhin, Likas-Kayang Produksyon ng Isda Isulong Natin”. “We are very much aware that the present situation of the country’s fishery sector still requires timely and relevant measures before we can attain full sufficiency on fish supply.

Hence, at the onset of the present administration, we have immediately laid out our catch-up plan which focuses on innovation, modernization, and intensification,” BFAR-OIC Director Nestor Domenden said in his message.

The Bureau strategically mapped out its existing programs and selected several that need to be upgraded and improved in order to boost local production, trim production costs, attain fish sufficiency, and at the same time, ensure that conservation measures are, in fact, working and in place. One of these is the sustainable revival of the population of fish species including indigenous species in the country’s inland and freshwater systems under the National Program on the Fisheries Enhancement of Inland Waters, more commonly known as Balik Sigla sa Ilog at Lawa (BASIL).

Through the National Inland Fisheries Technology Center, DA-BFAR has developed breeding protocols and established hatcheries for indigenous species such as ayungin, martiniko, and hito in order to increase their population at a thriving level for generations of Filipinos to come. Meanwhile, in both capture fisheries and aquaculture, the Bureau is also intensifying its production-related programs. Part of it is improving and expanding the utilization of fish aggregating devices, a technology that attracts high-level fish species and provide fishers with a precise fishing area, nationwide. DA-BFAR is also upgrading its seedstock development program and the utilization of small water impounding projects and open water resources such as dams and reservoirs as aquaculture production areas. In these projects, which are often done in close collaboration with other government agencies and the private sector, DA-BFAR makes sure that the project components are carefully planned out and executed in order to ensure the conservation of the ecological integrity of the aquatic resources.

By implementing programs that always strike a balance between boosting local fish production and conserving resources, Director Domenden emphasized that food sustainability and sufficiency depend on keeping the integrity of the country’s natural resources.


For the first time since the COVID-19 pandemic started, the Fish Conservation Week this year will be conducted face-to-face with participants coming from different demographics. Following government guidelines in health and safety protocols, the Bureau, through its technical divisions, has reinstated onsite symposiums on diverse topics such as the Red Tide phenomenon, Urban Aquaponics program, business opportunities in fish processing, and food safety.

DA-BFAR will also hold the Seafood Kadiwa ni Ani at Kita where the public may buy fresh assorted seafoods at an affordable price at the BFAR Central Office grounds on September 15. The Bureau is also set to launch its new Fisheries Business Center, a market venue for fishery-based MSME’s to promote local seafoods, also at the BFAR Central Office in Quezon City. As with tradition, individuals and groups who have contributed largely to the conservation of aquatic resources and continuous development of the fisheries sector in general will be awarded with Gawad Pagkilala and Gawad Pasasalamat plaques during the Opening Ceremony on September 12, 2022. (DA-BFAR) 

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Maria Viktoria Viado

Information Officer

Central Office

Information Officer I

Creative Production Services Division

Philippine Information Agency

Visayas Ave., Diliman, Quezon City 

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