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Lake Harvest Fish Farm: Enhancing Sustainable Food Security in Zimbabwe
The Lake Harvest Aquaculture project on Lake Kariba in Zimbabwe, financed by the AfDB Group, is the largest sustainable Tilapia fish farming in Africa. It creates jobs in Zimbabwe, particularly for women fish traders, and provides an important supply of affordable protein to the southern Africa region.
Addressing a Gap
The AfDB Group invested US$ 8 million to finance a viable agro-industrial project in a fragile state. This will be the AfDB Group’s first private sector investment in Zimbabwe, as part of its efforts to selectively re-engage in the country. The total fish consumption of major regional southern markets of Zambia, South Africa, DRC, Malawi and Angola is 1.3 million tonnes. The total unmet demand for tilapia in these markets is 100,000 tonnes per year.
Lake Harvest Aquaculture will produce 20,000 tons of fish annually. The company is primarily targeting African markets with Zimbabwe expected to absorb 37 percent of the production. It will export a further 50 percent to markets in the southern African region.
Lake Harvest Aquaculture is considered by many experts to be a model for sustainable fish farming on the continent.
Benefiting Women Traders
Lake Harvest is expected to generate more than 900 new high-quality permanent jobs by 2015, and will contribute an estimated US$ 33 million at present value terms, in government revenues over the next 10 years. The project’s developmental benefits include job creation, economic growth, gender needs and diversification. Most of the fish is sold by women traders. It will also contribute to increasing government revenues, regional trade and integration, foreign exchange generation and enhanced food security in Zimbabwe and neighboring countries.