Community Opportunities in Commercial Agriculture: Possibilities and Challenges

Aquaculture has potential to contribute towards food and nutrition security, job creation and income for South African communities, provided that the challenges and limitations for their participation in commercial aquaculture value chains can be overcome. Most communities lack investment funding and enter the industry from a base whereby they do not have the knowledge, technical skills, managerial capacity and marketing know-how for aquaculture. Partnerships with established aquaculture companies and entrepreneurs provide the best opportunities for bringing communities into mainstream commercial aquaculture. The partnerships need to include the sharing of relevant knowledge, technical and managerial skills for aquaculture and marketing. Partnerships based on closely knit shareholdership arrangements appear to hold the best chance for successful and sustainable community participation in commercial aquaculture.