Fish for Nutrition (BMZ)


Improving Food Security of the Vulnerable Population in Kismayo, Somalia through Access to Fishery Products; Commissioned by the German Federal Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development (BMZ)

Project Partner:

Somalia has the second longest coastline in Africa, stretching for more than 3,300 km. Despite an abundance of marine food resources, the country’s per capita consumption of fish is one of the lowest in the world. Although fishing does not require any complex technology or equipment, catching and eating fish is still not common among Somalis, even though many of them are affected by food insecurity. The major challenges facing the fishing industry include a lack of sales opportunities, significant losses due to poorly handled fresh catches and the absence of cold chains. Moreover, there are very few guidelines or monitoring mechanisms regulating fishing and fish sales.

Objective of the Project
Better access to high-quality fishery products has improved the food security of returnees, internally displaced persons and the population of Kismayo.


The project supports returnees, internally displaced persons and the local population in equal measure. It is aligned with the goals of the national development plan and pursues three strategies:

  • Media campaigns are raising awareness of the benefits of eating fish and practical knowledge is being passed on in cookery courses. The Ministry of Health is supporting health centres with nutritional advice.
  • Fishermen, fisherwomen and fishmongers are receiving training and learning about processing and storing fish hygienically in order to increase the availability of fishery products.
  • Infrastructure is being built to improve the availability and use of fishery products.

Somalia Project - Benefits of Fish Consumption


A broad-based campaign has reached about 459,000 people in Kismayo, informing them about the benefits of eating fish.

  • Health care facilities have added new information on fish to their advisory materials.
  • School-based campaigns on nutrition and media have reached more than 30,000 pupils, teachers and parents – fish is now a regular feature in their lunches.
  • 440 women have been trained in processing and preparing fish, 90 per cent of them now include fish in their family’s diet. In addition, around 260 women have taken part in a commercial training scheme and a microfinancing programme. This has enabled them to set up their own company or expand their existing one.
  • 150 fisherwomen, fishermen and fishmongers have been trained in the effective use of cold chains, hygienic fish handling and fish processing.
  • A database provides information about the species and the amount of fish caught in the region.
  • A new fishing law was put forward in mid-2019 and passed by the cabinet.
  • Newly developed glass fibre frames to dry large fish have quadrupled the number of fish dried hygienically.
  • In schelters for internally displaced people 40 women received drying racks for small fish.
  • From July 2021 on a new fish market in Alanley will offer fish vendors a good and hygienic selling point. Five restaurants will have fish disches on their menus.
  • Eight mobile selling points will supply remote neighbourhoods with fish.