New Delhi :-
Department of Fisheries encourages entrepreneurs and start-ups to unlock the untapped potential of the fisheries sector
Secretary, Department of Fisheries, MoFAH&D chaired a virtual interaction meeting organized by Department of Fisheries, to engage with the winners of the fisheries startup grand challenge and other fisheries startups to understand their progress, addressing concerns, and identifying avenues for further support on 12th January 2024. Startups leveraged this platform to present potential areas of collaboration and support for forward and backward linkages with key stakeholders, including NFDB and ICAR.
In collaboration with the Startup India hub and Department for Promotion of Industry and Internal Trade (DPIIT), DoF initiated the Fisheries Startup Grand Challenge to identify, reward, and acknowledge startups making significant contributions to the fisheries ecosystem. The challenge attracted applications from 121 startups addressing the four identified problem statements, and post rigorous evaluation, 12 startups were selected as winners of the challenge.
During the meeting, Secretary Shri Abhilaksh Likhi in his keynote address highlighted various initiatives taken by the Department of Fisheries to promote the startup ecosystem in the fisheries and aquaculture sector such as National Fish Farmers Day, the first edition of Global Fisheries Conference – 2023 and emphasized the continued support being provided to promote the fisheries startups.
Joint Secretary (Inland Fisheries) Shri Sagar Mehra highlighted the importance of startups to foster innovation and need to support the growth of new-age start-ups in the fisheries and aquaculture sector in the country. It was further highlighted that as of December 31st, 2023, there are 96 startups recognized by the DPIIT in the fisheries sector.
Joint Secretary (Marine Fisheries) Ms. Neetu Kumari Prasad in her address highlighted the gaps in the fisheries sector, wherein major interventions can be envisaged by the Startups. The interventions can be categorised into four segments: Reduction of feed cost, availability of quality seed, e-commerce platforms & marketing and Technology interventions in RAS, etc.
During interaction representatives and entrepreneurs appreciated initiatives of Department of Fisheries for giving them various platforms to showcase their innovations and connect with various stake holders in Fisheries and Aquaculture sector.
During interaction about 24 start-ups shared their views, more than 100 participants from DoF, ICAR, NFDB, FSI, and Invest India joined visually. Start-ups highlighted the need for marketing support, technology/product validation support from ICAR institutes, access to sectoral data trends, collaboration with state for forward and backward linkage, financial support for pilot and expansion through various schemes under Department of Fisheries amongst others. Several new initiatives were also discussed such as artificial reef systems, blue credits, platform-of-platforms for the fisheries sector, etc.
ARS, Chief Executive I/c & Senior Executive Director, NFDB Dr. L. Narasimha Murthy summarised the focus areas of discussion and ensured the Department of Fisheries commitment to continue to support the startups in addressing their concerns and organizing frequent focused dialogues with the startups and other stakeholders to facilitate collaborations both G2B and B2B.
As we strive to accelerate the growth and development in this sector, the integration of innovative ideas is crucial in shaping the future of the fisheries sector in India. The startup ecosystem in the fisheries sector has been gaining momentum, with entrepreneurs leveraging technology and innovative approaches to address various challenges and opportunities in the industry. The Department of Fisheries (DoF) has been encouraging start-ups and innovation in the fisheries sector, seeking their valuable insights and ideas, in an endeavour to shape the future of fisheries in our country.
Acknowledging the crucial role of the fisheries and aquaculture industry in the food security, nutrition, and livelihoods, the Government of India has been taking significant strides for the holistic growth and development of the sector. With a dedicated focus on fostering entrepreneurship and enhancing the ease of doing business, the Ministry of Fisheries, Animal Husbandry and Dairying (MoFAH&D) has been at the forefront of initiatives that recognize and support the potential of startups in revolutionizing the fisheries sector.