FAO hands over new fish smokehouses to beneficiaries

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Supporting sustainable energy-saving ovens to benefit women in the fish production value chain

9 December 2022, Banjul – The Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) on Friday 9th December 2022, handed over two new and environmentally friendly ‘FAO Thiaroye Technique (FTT)’ model fish smokehouses to beneficiaries at the Brufut and Tanji Fish Landing Sites.

The facilities are a simple but very efficient alternative to traditional fish smoking methods which may be hazardous and unfriendly to the environment. “These FTT ovens are energy saving. They are both safe, economical and emit less smoke.” Said Dr. Mustapha Ceesay, the Assistant FAO Country Representative for Programmes. Dr Ceesay  extolled UNIDO for sponsoring the project.

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Dr. Ceesay whilst entrusting the two facilities to the Fisheries Ministry reiterated FAO’s readiness to continue to partner with The Gambian government in enhancing food security and nutrition, he encouraged proper upkeep of the new smokehouses.

“I will encourage you to take ownership of these facilities by ensuring that they serve their purpose. These ovens if utilized optimally will generate a lot of revenue.” Receiving the keys on behalf of the beneficiaries, the Permanent Secretary at the Ministry of Fisheries, Water Resources and National Assembly Matters, Mr Omar Gibba hailed the existing genuine and beneficial partnership between his ministry and  FAO. He welcomed the benefits of the intervention for the fisheries sector.

“I am certain that these FTT ovens can produce better quality smoked fish for our women fish mongers, that being the case the ministry through its officials on the ground will be monitoring them to ensure they are used for their purpose.”

Beneficiaries including Bibi Manneh, President of Brufut Fishmongers association and the Alkalo of Tanji all thanked FAO and UNIDO for taking the projects to their communities, they said the ovens will generate revenue for women.

The construction of the facilities started over a year ago through funding from the UNIDO GEF project. The ovens will produce good quality fish free from smoke, The fish products may  sold  at local and international markets.