CHENNAI: Residents of the city will have to forgo their favourite Vanjaram fry or pay more for this tasty variety of fish, owing to the annual fishing ban that started in the State on Sunday. The 61-day ban has grounded more than 1,200 mechanised boats in Kasimedu, the city’s fishing hub.
Retail prices of deep-sea fish such as Vavval, Koduva and Sura are expected to increase by 50 to 100 per cent during the extended 60-day ban. With even ‘piper’ boats carrying large nets being prohibited from fishing this year, fishermen expect an unprecedented rise in fish prices.
“A few days ago, we caught a big load of Vanjaram and it was sold at `550 per kg. But now, the price could go up to `900,” said Vishal S, a trawler owner from Kasimedu.
“The ban on large nets in piper boats will ensure Vavval and Koduva will also have to be imported,” he added.
The fisherman also attribute the possibilities of skyrocketing fish prices to limited capital for fish imports from neighbouring States.
“Business hardly picked up in the last season after the Ennore oil spill and the fishing ban that ensued,” said K Bharathi, president, South Indian Fishermen Welfare Association, explaining that limited investment from traders would create a demand and push up prices.