Test Design Lighthouse


Kenya: Improved fish processing by smoking and solar drying

"For our project, the year began with some events, even internationally, where we were allowed to present our work and our products. However, the coming month have presented so many shortcomings of our solar dryer and smoker which again and again kept the progress on hold!", says project manager Peter Odote.

 

Report by Peter Michael Oduor-Odote

 

The project on Fish Processing by Solar Drying and Smoking is being conducted by Kenya Marine Fisheries Research Institute (KMFRI). It is a project that involves improved traditional fish processing methods by smoking and solar drying to produce high quality fish for both local and wider markets working with local communities at Gazi and Shimoni in a bottom-up approach. The methods of preservation employed are environment friendly and are set to improve on food security. The overall objective of the project is to produce, through community participation, high value smoked and solar dried marine fish products for the market.

 

Progress in 2011

Smoked and solar dried fish products before being taken for the exhibition
Preparation of fish for the Slow fish event in Italy
Unexplained moisture accumulation below the glass cover of the dryer in Shimoni

We have been involved in a few activities that help in publicity on the work we are doing. These activities are indicated below. We have also experienced certain shortcomings with our working implements which are also summarized in this short interim report

 

Participation in the Mombasa International Show

KMFRI once again participated in this event under the parent ministry of Fisheries Development. Among the products on display were specially prepared value added dried fish products prepared from funding by the Lighthouse foundation

The main challenge still remained marketing of the product though strategies have been put in place to approach the national markets form a different point of view

 

Participation at the Nairobi International Trade fair

KMFRI again participated at the Nairobi International Trade fair. This is fair attended by many people and they still wanted the products and hence the challenge of availing the products in the market

 

Exhibits that were used at the Terra Madre: Slow Fish

KMFRI helped through the Lighthouse foundation to prepare fish samples together with the Mpaaji ni Mungu women group which were taken to Italy for the slow fish event. We used this opportunity to conduct further training on value addition at Gazi. The products were well received and the ladies got a few Euros from the people who were tasting the fish.

 

Challenges

We are facing challenges with the dryers though each has a separate problem

The one in Gazi is fallng apart due to age, harsh weather conditions and there have been cases of vandalism. We lost the trays for laying fish, the switch for the solar system, and iron sheets covering the fish smoking oven . Efforts are underway to do a complete overhaul of the dryer

 

The one in Shimoni has had a problem with the glass cover ever since it was installed. The engineers from Jomo Kenyatta University of Agriculture and Technology (JKUAT) under Prof. Shitanda have tried to rectify the problem to no avail. We are now forced to try a last minute solution to the problem to see if we can succeed. It is still not understood why moisture accumulates under certain glass covers and why the glass cracks then breaks. Entering the national markets will still require time and resources as the conditions put are quite stringent

 

Resource Utilization

Most resources shall be diverted to the repair and maintenance of the working implements for the time being.

 

Linkage with TECAFILI

To work with communinities effectively, we have linked up with Mr. Barua under TECAFILI and we are in the process of duty linkages.

 

 

 

 

 

Acknowledgements:

Direktor KMFRI, Boaz Ohowa, Maurice Obiero, Maurice Omega, Shadrack Tunje, Milton Apollo

Contact:

Peter Michael Oduor-Odote

KMFRI

P.O.Box 816581

Mombasa

Kenya