Thirty million Indonesians are malnourished. A new bilateral project in fisheries and aquaculture aims at enhancing food security and reducing malnutrition through increasing the availability of fish and fish products for the domestic market in Indonesia. The project has been formulated by Wageningen UR in collaboration with the Indonesian Ministry of Marine Affairs and Fisheries. The Netherlands and Indonesia together contribute € 9 million to this bilateral collaboration project.
During the visit of Dutch Prime Minister Rutte, and Ministers Dijksma and Ploumen to Indonesia, 19-22 November 2013, Minister Dijksma of Economic Affairs has signed an agreement with the Indonesian Minister of Fisheries for collaboration between The Netherlands and Indonesia. The Centre for Development Innovation (CDI), Wageningen UR is leading the consortium. Other Dutch partners in the project include Wageningen UR LEI, IMARES, RIKILT and the Netherlands Food and Consumer Product Safety Authority (NVWA).
Food security policy
The project is in line with the Indonesian Policy on Food Security which intends to put more emphasis on diversification of the diet. Fish is seen as an important commodity in this. Increasing the availability of good quality fish and fish products is seen as a long-term and sustainable solution to the food and nutrition security situation of the Indonesian population. The project focuses on improved practices in both the capture fisheries and the aquaculture value chains. It covers activities such as marketing and distribution, product development, reducing waste, product quality and safety and promotion of fish consumption. The project has a special focus on entrepreneurship and explicitly aims at including the private sector.
Fish and other aquatic products are more important in the Indonesian diet than other animal derived food products, form a good source of high quality proteins and bio-available micronutrients.
The average per capita fish consumption is 25.40 kg/capita/year (FAO, 2009) and the ambition is to further increase the availability of fish and fish products for the domestic market to around 40.0 kg/capita per year. The bulk of fish and fish products produced in Indonesia is consumed locally; around 85% of the fish and fish products are used at the domestic market. On the other hand, capture fisheries and aquaculture play a vital role in the Indonesian economy. The sector provides direct employment to almost 6.5 million people, having an impact on the livelihoods and food and nutrition security of many Indonesians.