Fish Farmers Day in Tajikistan Date in the current year: July 14, 2024

Fish Farmers Day in Tajikistan Fish farm workers of Tajikistan celebrate their professional holiday on the second Sunday of July. The government of Tajikistan established Fish Farmers Day to highlight the important contribution of fish farms to the country’s economy.

Fish farming, also knows as pisciculture, is a type of aquaculture that involves commercial breeding of freshwater and marine fish in fish tanks or fish ponds. Fish farms should not be confused with fish hatcheries; the latter produce juvenile fish to release into the wild. According to the FAO, the most important fish species produced in fish farming are various species of carp, catfish, salmon, and tilapia.

Tajikistan, like other Central Asian states, is a landlocked country, therefore it experiences a shortage of water resources. For this very reason, fish farms play an important role in its economy. During the Soviet era, the Tajik Soviet Socialist Republic had seven large fish farms that produced up to 4,000 tons of live fish annually. In addition, the Ramit Trout Factory was well-known in both Tajikistan and other Soviet republics.

After the collapse of the Soviet Union, Tajikistani fish farms fell into decay, but over time, the country’s fish farming industry slowly began to revive. This was facilitated by the adoption and implementation of special state programs for the development of the fish farming industry. As of July 2020, there were 16 large and 372 dekhan (mid-sized) fish farms in Tajikistan. They produce about ten main fish species, including trout and several carp species (grass carp, silver carp, common carp, etc.).

The main challenge faced by the fish farming industry of Tajikistan is the lack of qualified personnel and modern equipment. There are very few ichthyologists in the country and no educational institutions to train them; young people who want to major in ichthyology have to study in Russian universities, and some choose not to come back because of better job opportunities in Russia.

Another issue is the lack of domestically produced feed. Tajikistani fish farmers have to import fish feed from other countries, which makes it very expensive and affects the cost of fish. According to local experts, a short-term solution would be to exempt fish farms from customs duties; the ideal solution, however, would be to allocate lands to fish farms where they could grow their own feed.

Fish Farmers Day in Tajikistan is celebrated on the second Sunday of July. In the Soviet Union, it was the date of Fisherman’s Day, which is still celebrated in Russia and Ukraine. The government of Tajikistan, however, decided to dedicate the holiday to fish farming rather than recreational fishing.

On the occasion of their professional holiday, Tajikistani fish farmers are shown gratitude for their hard work and dedication. Those of them who have distinguished themselves the most receive money bonuses and gifts. Since the holiday always falls on a Sunday, celebrations at fish farms are usually held on the preceding Friday or the following Monday.

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