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Fish supply chain from Galle to Colombo

Wednesday, 3rd of April 2019

In Sri Lanka Sea Food product sector plays a key role.It contributes about 2.7% to country GDP. With the development of the country fisheries sector has a significant scope to increase the level of contribution.The main role of the fishing industry is providing foodfish which is the main source of animal protein in a diet.As well as it provides employment for people who live in coastal area. Sri Lanka fisheries sector contain 3 subsectors; it is Offshore and Deep Sea, Coastal, Inland and Aquaculture. Mostly fish is supply from southern part of the country. Southern part of the country is very important when consider about fishing industry in Sri Lanka. Fishing is one of a main employment of down south people.

In southern province they do all the types of fishing that are Offshore and Deep Sea, Coastal, Inland and Aquaculture.Bentota,Balapitiya,A mbalangoda,Hikkaduwa,Galle,Weli gama,Mirissa,Matara,Tangalle,Ha mbantota,Kirinda are the places famous for fishing industry in Southern Province. Out of those places Galle takes a major place in fishing industry. Because there is fisheries harbour. Fisheries harbour is a place where accommodate only fish boats. It causes to the betterment of the fishing industry in Galle district. Therefore fishing is the main source of income in Galle. They catch the fish, sell the fish and transport fish within the region and they share fish with places where there do not have fish as well.

Such asColombo,Kandy.There are about 100-150 motorized boats in the Galle fisheries harbor. Lots of them are owned by Private sector. As well as Lorries which are used to transport fish also owned by private sector. They use motorized boats to catch the fish in the deep sea. Because sometimes they have to spend few days in the sea due to bad weather conditions and have to wait more time to catch fish in the off-season. Therefore motorized boats will help to arrive to harbor quickly and help to face any bad weather condition. The catch is bigger in the south-west monsoon. Most time they start journeys in the morning.

Because they can arrive to the port early and the catch is bigger in the morning. But sometimes they start journeys in the evening also to avoid the sun shine and in the morning sea is very calm. Therefore it is easy to do their job. In the afternoon sea is rough so they have to face many difficulties if they go to fishing in the afternoon. And traveling distance, frequency of travel depends on the size of the catch as well.First of all before they leave the port they fill ice into plastic barrels which has taken from their ice plant. After catch the fish they store it in those ice barrels. Then they bring back those barrels to the port. After that they unload fish as soon as possible. 

But if there is a rainy situation they wait until the rain stops They unloaded those fish into plastic boxes which are called” Cranes” Those plastic boxes are easy to handle. That is why they used plastic boxes. Then they put fish layer to the bottom of the regiformboxes. On that they put ice layerby using a shovel.Like that they put ice layers and fish layers till the boxes filled up and then close it.The weight of a box will be around35kg. After that load all boxes into lorries. They use several sizes of lorries to transport fish it depends on the amount of fish they transport. In a big lorry they can store 35kg x160 boxes. In a small lorry can store 35kg x120 boxes, Lorries are headed to Colombo, Kandy, Weligama and otherplaces.

They use freezer Lorries and normal lorries to transport the fish. Freezer Lorries use when they travel long distance to transport fish. Because they have to keep cool inside of the lorry for a long time to protect the freshness of the fish. For short distance they use normal Lorries. Because no need to keep cool inside of the lorry for a long time. Therefore using a freezer lorry for short distances will be useless and the cost of a freezer lorry is very high. Some fishermen are used normal lorries even for long distances because they cannot afford the cost a freezer lorry. At last they travel through southern expressway to distribute fish to other places.In Colombo district they headed to Paliyagoda. It takes one an half hour to arrive to Paliyagoda fish market.Then they unloaded fish to Paliyagoda fish market and retailers and whole sellers will buy those fish.Normally they travel one time per day to Paliyagoda and other places.But it is also depend on the catch.

Tharushika de Silva

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