The Mekong Delta city of Can Tho has worked out a plan to expand its aquaculture area to 26,000 hectares by 2020, doubling the current acreage.

With the expanded area, the city expects to earn at least one billion USD from an annual production of 335,000 tonnes of aquaculture products, of which 160,000 tonnes are for export, according to the Can Tho Department of Agriculture and Rural Development.

Under the city’s 2020 aquaculture development project, the farming area will be divided into two main sub-areas. The first, including 16,000 hectares in Thot Not district, a part of Vinh Thanh district and dunes in Hau River, will specialise in breeding freshwater prawn, tra (Pangasius) fish and other freshwater fish. The second, covering an area of 10,000 hectares in the districts of Vinh Thanh, Co Do and Phong Dien will raise catfish and other freshwater fish.

In addition, the city will build a fisheries centre capable of supplying two billion shrimp and fish fry each year in Vinh Thanh district.

To ensure the quality of its aquaculture products and meet the target, the city will conduct training courses to encourage farmers and processors to adopt international food safety standards such as GAP, SGF 1000 CM, HACCP and ISO, while expanding into foreign markets.

The city also aims to bring the total number of seafood processing plants to 33 with a total annual capacity of 192,000 tonnes by 2020.-VNA