The perennial rivers of Himachal Pradesh provide immense opportunities for trout production and supplementing incomes of the fishermen. The state government is making all out efforts to promote fishery sector in a big way for which various schemes are being implemented.
The government has proposed construction of 100 additional trout farming units during this financial year besides construction of ponds in 10 hectare for production of carp fish during this year. This decision will provide employment to about 550 more people.
Keeping in view the need of the fishermen for trout seed for increasing their production, the government has proposed to establish two trout hatcheries in collaboration with the private sector. The state government will also establish a smoked trout and fillet canning centre in Kullu district in partnership with private sector. Three retail outlets, one each in Kangra, Chamba and Shimla district, will also be established in the private sector to ensure appropriate marketing support.
Keeping in view the damage to the trout farming units due to flash floods and heavy rains during past few years, the government has announced an insurance scheme for trout farming units of the fishermen during this financial year.
The fish production has increased considerably during last few years and last year, a total 9302.44 MT fish valuing Rs. 11413.99 lakh was produced from both private as well as the departmental farms. During this period 546.31 lakh carp seed and 15.118 lakh trout seed was produced by the private and departmental farms. 141.668 lakh fish seed valuing Rs. 287.48 lakh was stocked in state reservoirs during this span of time.
As many as 12,650 state farmer and fishermen have been covered under free Pradhan Mantri Surksha BimaYojna (PMYBY). Recirculation Aquaculture System (RAS) is being established in the departmental carp farms to enhance aquaculture productivity in the state. For increasing fish production from state reservoir, a scientific study is being conducted by CIFRI, Barrackpore, Kolkata.
The Fisheries department has proposed to construct 20 hectare fish ponds, 110 Trout units, 11 Trout hatcheries, 4 Feed mills and 3 retail outlets in the private sector. All these trout units and fish ponds will be stocked with fish seed. The department will distribute 800 Gill nets to the 800 fishermen from the state reservoirs.
The Department has sent a proposal to implement livestock insurance scheme and central government has intimated for the implementation of the insurance scheme.
The Himachal Pradesh has initiated in direction of online sales and purchase of fish products under Fish Market Information System developed by Central Institute of Fisheries Technology, Kochi, Kerala. This is an online portal where buyers can place their demands and sellers can display their products. State is in the direction to implement this system shortly.
Encouraging Fish Produce Organizations (FPO) is among the priorities of the government, which envisages development of post-harvest infrastructure for fish products and makes profitable markets to available them.