Shrimp industry struggling in first month of New Year
Wednesday, February 8th, 2017
The Shrimp Farming Industry in Southern Belize has been battling to recover from a viral disease that has ravaged their shrimp stock. The industry resorted to a new genetic material, which seemed to be working. However, according to unofficial reports, the situation has not improved and difficulties continue.
The Ministry of Agriculture has been closely monitoring the situation, and Agriculture Minister Godwin Hulse stated there are signs of a comeback. “There are some promising results, but some disappointment as well. Rainforest Company is producing lovely shrimp, but they have small ponds specially designed to drain. [As to the disappointment], the company has tried to export some to Mexico, but there’s been some setback, which we are trying to seriously analyze. I will put this as bluntly as I can: It’s a technical problem, and it requires a technical solution and so at this time the Belize Agricultural Health Authority (BAHA) and everybody else is engaged in trying to find that technical solution to the setbacks,” said Hulse.
This is not the first time the shrimp industry has suffered a huge loss. In November 2015, an estimated $30 million was lost due to a bacterial disease that attacked the shrimp farms, and more than a hundred employees were laid off. However, with priority to recover the losses, the shrimp industry recovered the following year. Hulse acknowledged that there is an economic problem as well, but he remains confident that the Ministry of Agriculture will find a solution, and that shrimp farming will flourish once more.