One of the most thriving fish markets in Abuja is the Kado Fish Market,located along Gwagwa-Karmo road, Life Camp, it is popular for all kinds of fish products.
It is the first choice for many fish farmers to market their products and fishmongers looking for buyers of their products in the Federal Capital Territory. It is a melting pot and meeting point for fish farmers, businessmen and women dealing in fish and products such as feeds, drugs.
The market takes care of the various demands of buyers in terms of variety of the products and type of fish desired;whether it is live catfish or smoked ones, buyers are always presented with different choices from which to select.
The market is organised into five segments: those trading in smoked fish, those trading in fresh fish, those selling frozen fish, those who serve as dealers and receive the fish directly from farmers and suppliers, those whose business is preparing the fish for buyers and those selling fish feeds and drugs.
Alhaji Mohammed Inuwa is a smoked fish seller and the secretary of their association in Kado market. He told Daily Trust how fish business is faring at Kado Fish Market. He sells different types of smoked fish- from the ones caught from rivers, lakes, and those from fish ponds around Abuja.
“This market is moving well here I must confess. We get a lot of supplies and we have buyers as well. People buy catfish more than other types of fish because it is cheaper and most people are conversant with it compared to the others,” Inuwa said.
On prices, he said a carton of smoked fresh water fish is sold for between N50, 000 and N60,000 depending on availability while a carton of catfish sells for far below that. “It goes for N21,000 to N25,000 depending on the size of the fish in the carton.”
Daily Trust asked him how a buyer can identify the fish raised from fish ponds and those caught from the natural bodies of water when smoked, Inuwa said:“When you see catfish having almost the same size and shinning, it comes from the ponds. On the other hand, when you see that the fishes are of different sizes having a lot of smaller ones, it comes from the rivers. They don’t usually look physically good like those ones from the ponds.”
However, he stressed that the ones caught from natural water bodies taste better and cost more even though they don’t have much flesh like the ones from the ponds.
He said some of the fish caught from rivers are brought in from Maiduguri, Hadeja, Yauri in Kebbi State among other places. The catfish are supplied mostly from Ibadan and farms in and around Abuja.
Mohammed said they buy fish fresh from farmers or fishermen and smoke them here in Abuja before taking them to the market. They have people whose job is to smoke the fish under their supervision.
According to him, neighbouring countries like Chad and Cameroon supply fish to them through Maiduguri, adding that the current security challenges in that part of the country have made it difficult for them to go there, which he argued is responsible for the current high price been experienced in the market.
Malam Abdulsalam is the manager of one of the fresh fish sellers at the market. He said they get most of the fresh water fish from Kogi, Kaduna, Niger, Hadeja in Jigawa, Benue and other states that have rivers and lakes, while catfish is supplied largely from Ibadan and other western states.
A kilogramme of the fresh water fish is sold at N1,300 in the market. One of the fresh water fish he had in his shop weighed 30 kilogrammes and will sell for about N39,000 going by the price per kilo. A kilogramme of catfish is sold at N750 in the market.
He said that he has sold the ones that weighed 70 to 100kg, stressing that they are relatively scarce at the moment, although he couldn’t tell the reporter why.
Abdulsalam said he has customers from Jos, Akwanga, Kaduna, Lafia and other places who come to buy catfish from their store. He also said that the market for catfish exists everywhere in Abuja adding that fish farmers in and around the city cannot meet the demand of fish buyers.
The reporter visited the section where buyers take their fish for cutting and discovered that young men were also making brisk business from providing services to buyers who want their fish to be cleaned and cut into small chunks.
It will cost a buyer between N50 to N100 depending on the size of the fish be bought to have it cut.
Frozen fish sellers were also making brisk business as those spoken to admit making good business in the market.
Sellers of fish feeds are also not left out. Some of them who spoke to Daily Trust said many farmers in the FCT come to them to purchase fish feeds, drugs or equipment.
No matter what you want in the fish business, Kado fish market may well interest you.
Credits : Daily Trust Nigeria