The management of China Fujian Fishing Ghana Ltd says it acted swiftly to report the death of tilapia on its Asutsuare Tilapia Farm to the appropriate authorities for them to assist the company to find a solution to the challenge.
As a law-abiding company, it had also subjected itself to relevant investigations by all government agencies, a statement issued by the company yesterday said.
"We will like to state emphatically that we made a formal complaint to the National Security, the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and the Ministry of Fisheries and Aquaculture.
"Samples of fish and water were sent to the Ghana Standards Authority (GSA) and the Water Research Institute for analysis," it said.
The statement added that a report from the GSA on "Screening for common poisons" indicated that none of the affected fish was found to be poisoned.
The statement explained that fish kills did happen on all tilapia farms occasionally, due to various factors.
In the October 19, 2018 incident, however, the company attributed it to environmental factors due to a recent downpour resulting in high water levels which carried waste and other discharge from upstream factories in the area.
“Our factory was hit hard due to our huge operations, and the large amount of tilapia that was affected has been sanitised and disposed of appropriately,” the statement said.
The statement thanked the Ministry of Fisheries and Aquaculture for its support, advice and monitoring.
“We, however, appeal to the various authorities and stakeholders to help regulate upstream human activities at dumping sites, industrial and farming activities and their waste products.
“The Volta River needs to be taken good care of due to its immense socio-economic benefits and contribution to the country at large through transportation, materials, fish and other resources,” it added.
The statement stressed that the China Fujian Fishing Company had, in the last three years, conducted its business under high safety conditions, bearing consumers in mind, and “it is, therefore, sad that this accident is being used by other players in the sector to propagate lies to tarnish our hard-earned reputation”.
The company is into the production of state-of-the-art fish feed plant, production pond with the required technology for the breeding and rearing of fingerlings and the manufacture of tilapia production cages.
China Fujian, located at Asutsuare in the Shai Osudoku District in the Greater Accra Region, also has over 1,000 direct and indirect workers, while the rich and natural feed is produced locally with raw materials such as soybean, corn, etc.
sourced from the local market.
“We assure our customers that we will continue to have their interest at heart and continue to operate within the safety requirements and regulations governing the industry,” the statement said.
It said although the company was reeling under pressure as a result of halting operations, it was urging its trading partners to remain calm as investigations continued.
More than six tonnes of the tilapia died under strange conditions on the company’s farm, raising concerns over the likelihood of some of the affected fish finding their way onto the local market.
The affected fish have been buried near the company’s premises under the supervision of the EPA.
The company has also halted operations, awaiting the outcome of investigations into the matter by the relevant authorities.