FISH FEED MILL. A fish feed mill will soon operate in Baler town, Aurora province. Funded by the Bureau of Fisheries and Aquatic Resources and the National Fisheries Research Development Institute, the facility was put up to lower the cost of feeds and boost the fisheries sector in the province. (Photo courtesy of BFAR Region 3)

CITY OF SAN FERNANDO, Pampanga – Preparations are now underway for the operation of a fish feed mill in Baler town, Aurora province that is expected to bring down the cost of feeds.

Wilfredo Cruz, regional director of the Bureau of Fisheries and Aquatic Resources-Central Luzon (BFAR-3), said on Monday that a planning workshop and hands-on feed formulating training were provided by their agency to 15 provincial agriculture staff of Aurora to enhance their knowledge on fish food production.

“The training aims to prepare the local government to gain technical knowledge on developing a cost-effective feed formulation using cheaper and locally available ingredients,” Cruz said in a statement.

With funding from the BFAR and the National Fisheries Research Development Institute, collaborative plans were disclosed in February 2022 for the establishment of the feed mill facility in Aurora.

The project broke ground in March that year and is now about 80 percent complete.

The BFAR official said construction has entered the next phase, which includes adding the milling and mixing equipment and warehouse space.

Cruz, in his earlier meeting with DA Undersecretary for Agri-Industrialization and Fisheries Cheryl Marie Natividad-Caballero and Aurora local officials, agreed that indigenous and readily available materials such as "kangkong," (water spinach) "malunggay" (moringa), rice husk and copra would be utilized in the feed mill in order to bring down the production cost.

With the help of the feed mill, he said the fisherfolk's concerns about the expensive commercial fish feed will be addressed. (PNA)