Kenyan meat processor Farmers Choice has admitted to selling Tilapia from China, this admission coming after a picture of their packaging went viral on social media.
A social media user had posted the photo online, asking why the company was selling fish sourced from China, yet Kenya produces the same type of fish.
In a response on social media, the company clarified that they do import fish from China, explaining that there is a shortage of supply in the country.
“We confirm that we do import tilapia fillets from an export licensed processing plant in China for onward sale in Kenya. The sad fact is that despite the press reports last year there is in fact a major shortage of tilapia in Kenya,” read a message from the company’s MD on Facebook.
Given some international reports of poor quality food exports from China, some users question China, some social media users question whether the fish is of good quality.
The company assured consumers that they ensure a high level of quality saying: “At Farmer’s Choice, we ensure a high level of quality control at every stage of the process through to the final receipt of the goods by the final consumer.”
The company went on to say that they would be happy to get a local supplier, but they are yet to find one who would meet all their requirements.
One user, however, challenged this statement, asking what the company was doing to boost local production.
“My question is what is Farmers Choice doing to empower locals to produce more tilapia? If there is a shortage then shouldn’t Farmers Choice be engaging fish pond farmers as they do with farmers who rare pigs for them to produce pork?” Paul Mwenda posed.