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AFRICABIZ VOL 1 - ISSUE: 82
FEBRUARY 15 - MARCH 14, 2006
Previous Issue
Editor: Dr. Bienvenu-Magloire Quenum
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A WORD FROM THE EDITOR


Dear visitor and international investor,


We warmly welcome you, if this is your first visit to Africabiz Online - The ultimate newsletter on trading and investing in 49 sub-Saharan African countries. If you are a regular and faithful reader, welcome back.

- TO STAY FOCUSED. THAT IS ONE OF THE SECRET OF SUCCESSFUL BUSINESS

To succeed in any line of business, one has to stay focused. On permanent alert. That is one of the secret to be successful in business.

One has to be on alert to catch the tiniest opportunity that is passing by. Is it a mail you received from an unknown - not in your contact list? You have to analyze it to see if there is a genuine opportunity to "grab" the sender as an advertiser on your webpages - for instance.

During a phone call, your correspondent made a remark that sounds weird or odd at first glance. Take notice and after you put down the receiver, analyze that oddity to see if there is an opportunity to start something anew that could lead to success.

Make use of your sound judgment. Do not fall though into the hands of scamers - like the infamous 419 scam letters.

In short, one has to sleep with one eye and constantly watch the environment. Tiresome? Not at all. It is a question of practice. The more you practice to be focused, the more it would become an ingrained behavior.

Click here to read about: How To Stay Focus And Build Your Business.

- Contributor's Guidelines are here to review. Your contribution on "How emerging nations and particularly African countries / entrepreneurs could bridge the developing gap" is welcome.

Your feedback / objection / contribution is welcome. Visit WorldWide BizCenter, and choose General Information (as topic) to create a thread for discussion. On the top of the WorldWide BizCenter page, there is a HELP link to assist you making an efficient use of the discussion board. This link also is useful


Many thanks for dropping by and see you here on March 15, 2006.

Dr. B.M. Quenum

Editor of AFRICABIZ

Contact Dr. Bienvenu-Magloire Quenum

BUSINESS OPPORTUNITIES IN AFRICA


- Several business opportunities - component parts of the Integrated Developing Scheme described in Africans, Stop Being Poor! are listed in following table.


a- SHEA BUTTER (5, 6, 7, 11, 12, 13)
b- BLUE GOLD (14, 15, 16, 17, 18, 19)
c- FREEZE-DRIED PAPAIN (20, 21, 22 and here)
d- KENAF (23, 24)
e- VEGETABLE OIL (25, 26, 27, 28)
f- CEREALS (30, 31, 32, 33)
g- FRUITS (34, 35, 36, 37, 38, 39, 40, 42, 43, 44, 45, 46)
h- ESSENTIAL OILS (47, 48, 49, 50, 51, 52)
i- ROOTS & TUBERS (54, 55, 56, 57, 58, 59, 60, 61, 62, 63, 64)
j- FOWL BREEDING (66, 67, 68, 69, 70, 71, 72, 73, 74, 75, 76)
k- FISH FARMING (78, 79, 80, 81, 82, 83,

- FISH FARMING AS BUSINESS OPPORTUNITY: PART V - CATFISH BREEDING CHARACTERISTICS AND WORLD MARKET

There are two ways to establishing fishing-farms: 1- Labor-intensive and 2- Capital-intensive.

In the first case, the cost of labor is, most of the time, the main factor to consider to keep production costs at bay. In capital-intensive ventures high feed costs are the primary limiting factor in terms of production costs.

A fishing-farm venture will be economically feasible if products can be produced and sold at competitive prices against other animal-protein sources (meat and chicken meat). For that reason, most of the times, fish-farming operations are vertically integrated from fingerlings production to the final product to be sold on marketplace: whole fresh fish, fresh filets or transformed fish such as salted, smoked or sun dried fish.

In anticipation to the Economics of a Small-Scale Fish-Farming Operation based on the polyculture of Tilapia and Catfish, we shall, in this issue, further consider Catfish's breeding characteristics and potential market - worldwide.

- CATFISH BREEDING CHARACTERISTICS

Nile catfish - Courtesy of Interoz.comCatfish are generally produced by allowing brooder catfish to spawn in shallow open ponds, then collecting the egg masses and incubating them in indoor hatcheries or in (deep) outdoors ponds. 

Ponds for catfish production generally run from 2 to 10 acres. Standard (well managed) pond production of catfish is 25,000-40,000 lb/acre. [11 to 18 kg/acre]

Channel cattish, Ictalurus punctatus (Rafinesque), is the most important species of aquatic animal commercially cultured in the world and particularly in the United States. It belongs to the family Ictaluridae, order Siluriformes. Members of the order Siluriformes are found in fresh and salted water worldwide.

African catfish species are here listed. [Lake Nasser in Egypt is full of catfish (the dam holds back the mud and silt that the catfish like to live in), and Egyptians do not harvest them as - for cultural reasons - they consider Catfish not suitable for food: Source]

In North America, there is a thriving catfish industry that relies on 6 of the 39 species available: the blue catfish, Ictalurus furcatus (LeSueur); the white catfish, Ictalurus catus (Linnaeus); the black bullhead, Ictalurus melas (Rafinesque); the brown bullhead, Ictalurus nebulosus (LeSueur); the yellow bullhead, Ictalurus natalis (LeSueur); and the flathead catfish, Pylodictis olivaris (Rafinesque).

In natural waters channel catfish live in moderate to swiftly flowing streams, but they are also abundant in large reservoirs, lakes, ponds and some sluggish streams. They are usually found where bottoms are sand, gravel or rubble, in preference to mud bottoms. Channel catfish are freshwater fish but they can thrive in brackish water. Channel catfish generally prefer clear water streams, but are common and do well in muddy water - particularly in Africa.

Feeding can occur during day or night, and they eat a wide variety of both plant and animal material. Channel catfish usually feed near the bottom in natural waters but will take some food from the surface. Based on stomach analysis, young catfish feed primarily on aquatic insects. Adults have a much more varied diet which includes insects, snails, crawfish, green algae, aquatic plants, seeds and small fish. When available, they will feed avidly on terrestrial insects, and there are even records of birds being eaten.

Channel catfish grow best in warm water with optimum growth occurring at temperatures of about 85° F (29.4° C). With each 18° F (10° C) change in temperature there is a doubling or halving of their metabolic rate. This means that within limits, their appetite increases with increasing water temperatures or decreases with decreasing water temperatures.

The size and age that channel catfish reach in natural waters depends on many factors. Age and growth studies have shown that in many natural waters channel catfish do not reach 1 pound in size until they are 2 to 4 years old.

In production ponds the mouth rate of channel catfish is determined by water temperature; length of time held at different water temperatures; quantity and quality of food fed; palatability, or taste of food; frequency of feeding; water quality, etc. Most farm-raised catfish are harvested at a weight of 11/4 pounds at an age of about 18 months.
[Source]

DEFINITIONS USED FOR CATFISH PRODUCTION


Broodfish - Fish kept for egg production, including males. Broodfish produce the fertilized eggs which go to hatcheries. The most desirable size is 3 to 10 pounds or 4 to 6 years of age.

Large Foodsize - Fish weighing over 3 pounds.

Medium Foodsize - Fish weighing over one and one-half pounds to 3 pounds.

Small Foodsize - Fish weighing over three-fourths pound to one and one-half pounds.

Large Stockers - Fish weighing over 180 pounds to 750 pounds per 1,000 fish.

Small Stockers - Fish weighing over 60 pounds to 180 pounds per 1,000 fish.

Fingerlings/ Fry - Fish weighing 60 pounds per 1,000 fish and less.

- POSSIBLE FINGERLING SUPPLY' SOURCES

Catfish Farmers of America, phone +1 662 887-2699, is the trade association that represents catfish farmers across the U.S. Its main publication is The Catfish Journal. Alabama Catfish Producers. The organization also works closely with the Department of Fisheries and Allied Aquacultures at Auburn University, USDA, Agricultural Research Service, Aquatic Animal Health Research Unit and the Alabama Cooperative Extension System to determine research needs and provide information for Alabama producers.

There are research stations around African continent specialized in fingerling production for Tilapia - Particularly in Egypt, and South Africa.

On the international marketplace Vietnam's catfish industry could be a good supply' source; Wageningen University in Holland and the University of Florida in the United States of America are other reliable sources that provide information on warm water fishing techniques.

CATFISH MARKET SIZE IN AFRICAN COUNTRIES AND WORLDWIDE

In most African countries, there are, here and there, research stations on fish-farming development. But sadly enough, such researches had not resulted into full promotional activities to establish Catfish as protein provider for the populations.

Tilapia and catfish production worldwideIndeed, currently (end of 2005) not a single sub-Saharan African country had a promotion plan for the extensive culture of Catfish. One could therefore consider the African market for Catfish to be potentially a huge one for whole fresh product and transformed products such as smoked and sun-dried catfish.

Considering an intake of one (the strict minimum) whole catfish per African, per month, one could estimate the market size to be in the range of minimum 3,264,000 metric ton a year. [400g x 680,000,000 (Africans) x 12 (months)]. Imagine what the potential would be if one consider a daily intake of one whole tilapia fish per inhabitant!

Catfish and Tilapia could be used by African economic planners as perfect Income Building Operations for rural communities in African countries. That is the breeding of both species could provide cash on a sustainable basis to rural folks throughout Africa.

Based on previous deliveries' contents, the next issue 83 (March 15, 2006) will expose investments briefs about a small-scale polyculture operation concerning Tilapia and Catfish's breeding.


MORE ON FISH FARMING
1- How to Start and Manage a Fish Farming Business
by Jerre G. Lewis
2- Integrated Fish Farming
by Workshop on Integrated Fish Farming
3- Catfish farming handbook
by Jerry Mack Johnson
4- Commercial Catfish Farming
by Jasper S. Lee
5-
Cage Culture Of Tilapia
In Rural Farm Ponds

An article from: Journal of the Alabama Academy of Science [HTML]
(Digital - January 1, 2000)
6- Backyard Fish Farming
by Paul Bryant

7- Intensive Fish Farming
by Jonathan Shepherd, Niall Bromage
8- Second International Symposium on Tilapia in Aquaculture:
by Thai International Symposium on Tilapia in Aquaculture 1987 Bangkok, et al (Hardcover - January 1990)
9- Tilapia Culture
by Abdel-fattah M. El-sayed, A. F. M. Sayed (Hardcover - February 2006)
10- Tilapias: Biology and Exploitation
by M.C.M Beveridge (Editor), B. McAndrew (Editor)

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