Signing of the MoU to develop Cochin Fisheries Harbour Photo: MPEDASigning of the MoU to develop Cochin Fisheries Harbour Photo: MPEDA

The Marine Products Export Development Authority (MPEDA) is set to work with Cochin Port Trust (CPT) to modernise Kerala’s pivotal Cochin Fisheries Harbour with more than a dozen key features that will enhance the value of seafood and minimise post-harvest losses

The 1928-founded CPT runs the harbour, built on 27 acres of land, facilitating berthing and landing of more than 500 vessels. Commissioned in 1978, the harbour at Thoppumpady clocks a daily average landing of 250 tonnes of fish.

“These 25 major fishing harbours contribute a lion’s share of landings in the country for export,” said MPEDA chairperson K S Srinivas. “At present, India’s value addition of marine products is a mere 5 per cent. We must increase it manifold, given that the figure for South East Asian countries is 50 per cent.”

The memorandum of understanding notes that inadequate infrastructure is hampering the quality of the fish and aims to build new air-conditioned auction halls, a packing hall and bays for loading and unloading.

Also to come are an ice plant, a reverse osmosis plant and a rainwater harvesting system together with automation equipment such as tripods, conveyor belts and pallet jacks, electrical substations, an effluent treatment plant, a retail market, fish-dressing unit and net-mending area, besides offices, dormitories, a food court, canteen, a drivers’ waiting area and parking lots for vehicles.

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