Can local corned fish compete with imported codfish?

By Demion McTair. Updated 8:48 p.m., Sunday May 17, 2020, Atlantic Standard Time (GMT-4).

Discussion: Locally caught and corned fish can be a substitute for imported Canadian Codfish.

One local entrepreneur, Tara Hazell-Peniston, thinks that it is something the nation of St. Vincent and the Grenadines should pursue.

Peniston, who is from the grenadine island of Bequia, told One News SVG today (May 17), that “locally, people prefer it (local corned fish) than the imported one (the codfish)”.

A bag of dried, corned fish. Photo: Baldwin Ollivierre.

She said the “taste is way better, quantity might be a problem, but if there is a market for it” if “more fishermen will go and catch to sell”.

“A constant demand can generate interest for the fishermen to go and get them” – she added.

As St. Vincent and the Grenadines seeks to ramp up local food production in the wake of the Covid-19 pandemic, corned fish is an area that can be explored.

The entrepreneur, whose father is deeply involved in the fishing industry says there is a lot of potential for the product.

“I went with my dad few times we set nets out for few days or sometime few hours we then go and pull the nets and and sometimes in one haul get few hundred fish to corn” – she told One News SVG.

Other factors such as pricing are important.

One pound of Codfish can range from $12 – 14 dollars per pound. But, Peniston said that her father would sell a pound of corned fish for $12 – 14 dollars, showing a competitive price.

Recently, the government of St. Vincent and the Grenadines announced a program to provide grant funding for entrepreneurs called – Promoting ‘youth Micro-Enterprises (PRYME).

Finance Minister, Camillio Gonsalves said that priority will be given to entrepreneurial initiatives in the agriculture and fisheries sectors.

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