Kenya owns 6% of Lake Victoria water biomass with fish productivity of 90% and exports almost 95%. In December 2019, active mobile subscriptions was approximately 54.5 million while one in 5 Kenyans have access to the internet (KNBS, 2019). As the advancement of ICT Technology and introduction of new 4G mobile telephone services marketing of fish is on the rise as the market is expanded. Therefore, in view of the above technological growth, fish marketing information is expected to be widely accepted to increase blue growth from grass root level to international market levels.
Due to inadequate fish marketing information disclosure to prospective stakeholders in this area fish prices are found to be fluctuating from time to time and hence entry barriers exist whereby middlemen and sellers experience wide fish price margins. This has been found to impede harmonious trading patterns as fish products do not meet the supply and demand inter play at the required trading space and time. Therefore, the growth in fish trade is expected to move upwards with advancement in revamped fish marketing technology when sold to the community concerned so that fish and fish products reaching traders at different corners of the globe will be done at a reasonable prices, condition and time which has not been the case previously. Women’s involvement in small-scale fisheries is essential to support their livelihoods and food security, as well as the sustainability of the fisheries sector. Despite their significant contributions, women in small-scale fisheries often face various challenges, including limited access to markets, and decision-making processes.
Institutions have to roll out new procedures as a response to new technologies or changing business conditions due to costs, flexibility and convenience of given platforms. With a view to facilitating data collection and processing, KMFRI adopted an integrated application module for the revamped Electronic Fish Market Information System (EFMIS) application under an electronic Catch Assessment Survey (eCAS) tool. Using a phased-change management tool of Planning, Communication, Training and Monitoring (PCTM), the institute progressively introduced system improvements and developed the capacities of enumerators to adapt. System roll-out results indicate that the flow of data from enumerators has been stabilized, the accuracy of data submission has been enhanced, and time costs on data entry have been eliminated. Although the EFMIS data and information sharing is through monthly bulletins, there ought to be a plan to share with critical stakeholders for easy access of relevant fish and market trends. EFMIS has brought many improvements and advantages to the data collection and submission process. These include, enhancement of the speed of data submission, monitoring of data collectors through location settings, data accuracy through integrated system intelligences, improved reporting interface, quicker in-built analyses, more secure storage of data in the cloud, and minimization of submission costs and labor. EFMIS has been useful in collecting market data, but its use beyond data collection has been limited.
The main aim of this project is to enhance the use of EFMIS by various actors in the fisheries value chain to scale their businesses for sustainable socio-economic development. This calls for periodic review of the system, regular training of data personnel and additional financial support towards an integrated SMS query platform for enhanced dissemination. The roll-out of revamped.
- Integration EFMIS with a query system (USSD code) in order to facilitate dissemination of market information through phones to value chain actions
- Train on EFMIS use: Training on EFMIS use will be conducted for all actors in the value chain to ensure they can access, interpret, and use EFMIS data for decision making. The training will also cover the importance of data sharing and how to use EFMIS to access finance and markets.
- Create linkages between actors: Linkages will be created between actors in the value chain to improve access to markets and finance. This will be done through the establishment of market hubs where traders and processors can access fish directly from the fishers. The market hubs will also serve as a platform for finance providers to interact with actors in the value chain and offer financing options.
- Dr Chrispine Nyamweya, Kenya Marine and Fisheries Research Institute (KMFRI)
- Prof James Njiru, KMFRI
- Dr Christopher M Aura, KMFRI
- Ms Fonda Awuor, KMFRI
- Zack Ogari, Kenya Fisheries Service
- Hezron Awandu, KMFRI
- Kevin Onsongo, KMFRI