x Abu Dhabi, UAESunday 22 October 2017

Illegal catches of banned fish to be donated to needy during Ramadan

Fish illegally caught by local fishermen and confiscated by authorities will be re-distributed to the needy this Ramadan as part of the country’s push to curb food waste.

DUBAI // Fish illegally caught by local fishermen and confiscated by authorities will be re-distributed to the needy this Ramadan as part of the country’s push to curb food waste.

Dr Thani Al Zeyoudi, Minister of Climate Change and Environment, announced the plan in Dubai on Monday.

“We started this two months ago when we banned the fishing of the sheri and safi species,” he said on the sidelines of a pre-Ramadan food waste awareness raising event. “We knew some fishermen did not adhere to the ministerial decree and they were fishing those two species. So they get confiscated and passed on to associations in Fujairah and Ras Al Khaimah to be re-distributed to the right people.”

Although fewer than 10 fishermen were caught catching the banned fish, the ministry hopes to expand the initiative to the rest of the UAE.

Another project it plans to roll out to tackle food waste is the donation of gardens to 20 schools across all seven emirates.

“We’re aiming to educate children and we’ll engage with the students in planting food within the school,” Dr Al Zeyoudi said. “We want the new generation to understand the process of reducing their final product so they live with it. When it comes to consumption, they will think about the water consumed and the efforts they made until the final product has been delivered to them so they don’t waste anything and they know the implications of any negative [practice] they apply.”

cmalek@thenational.ae