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Thursday, January 4

A fish tale and coca

Christian Science Montior In Peru, a move to get farmers to trade in fish rather than coca: A new initiative to convince coca growers that there are better things to do with their time, like saving endangered species:

A throwback to prehistoric times, with armored scales and a flat head, the paiches must come to the surface to breathe, making them easy targets for harpoon fishermen. But overfishing to meet demand for their delicious, flaky, boneless meat is wiping out paiche populations, and is now spurring efforts to save the fish, including a fish-farm venture that aims to provide local coca leaf growers with an alternative livelihood that does not fuel the illicit drug trade.

Hopefully, this government program will not disappear when US AID changes its managers or the Peruvian government decides to control fish prices. The big problem will be how to prevent spoilage once harvested.

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