Cambodia needs to diversify its food sources and improve marine conservation efforts amid dwindling numbers of fish stocks in the Mekong River, which remains one of the main sources of fish for Cambodians, experts said yesterday.
During a Sustainable Mekong Research Network (Sumernet) forum in Phnom Penh yesterday, experts said the government needed to improve efforts to ensure the fish population in the Mekong River remains at a sustainable level without compromising people’s dependency on the vast body of water.
“Cambodia needs to reduce its dependency on fish. This means diversification through farming and livestock so that cattle and chicken is available as a protein replacement,” Eric Baran, a senior scientist at international nonprofit WorldFish, said during a panel discussion yesterday. “Also more fruit and vegetables.”
Experts also called on the government to encourage farming communities to use their flooded paddy fields as fish ponds to increase productivity and diversify the source of their catch.