Freshwater fish seed resources in Ghana
The present study has provided an evaluation of a basic and important requirement of the industry: hatcheries to produce fingerlings for farmers. The information presented in this paper consists of different aspects of the freshwater fish seed sector in Ghana such as resources and supply, production facilities and technology, management, quality, marketing, certification, economics and a brief description of the seed industry, legal and policy frameworks, support services and stakeholders. A well-planned and coordinated action is required to solve the major constraints in the sector so that an orderly and rapid progress can be achieved. Among the recommendations include: (i) contract with some private companies with the capability to produce seed for the industry to be given incentives and contracts drawn up against the government and the farmers, (ii) there should be a re-focusing of research and training programmes at all levels to cater for the emerging needs, (iii) development of stocks better suited for local conditions and management to maintain genetic integrity in the light of potential fish transfers, (iv) efforts to ensure all-year round supply of quality fish seed, (v) inclusion of aquaculture objectives in national and international agricultural seed development funding programmes or projects and (vi) strengthening of technical manpower, provision of equipment and other logistics to facilitate hatchery production and delivery of fingerlings to farmers. The study concluded that while it has become evident that producing seed is not a major problem, good management of the entire process will be a major challenge. The country needs to be updated with some of the latest technology in order to ensure that Ghana remains competitive and is able to produce the fast growing fish required in commercial aquaculture – and also to provide enough protein through aquaculture to meet the needs of the people.