In the canning industry Namsov Fishing Enterprises is the only producer of canned sardines for the Namibian market, using locally caught fish. United Fishing Enterprises is active in the inshore small pelagic fishing industry with canning, fishmeal and fish oil processing facilities. Under the well-known and established Ocean Fresh and Ekunde labels we produce canned pilchards and Horse Mackerel in beans which is fully owned by this proudly Namibian producer. We are currently concluding the testing with NSI and product will shortly be available in the major retail outlets and through our Fish Distribution project.
In addition to the above stable of sought after products, we would like to introduce to the Namibian market, our tasty Namsov Horse Mackerel in Tomato Sauce and Horse Mackerel in Chilli Sauce to further supplement our contribution to the 2% canning requirement by the Ministry of Fisheries and Marien Resources. In addition to supporting the “Growth at Home” vision of our Government, for on shore processing at our value addition centre, we now have for the local market a 1.6kg frozen box of Horse Mackerel. This in turn complements the Minister's 30% of Total Allowable Catch for inland Fish Distribution. The frozen Namsov Horse Mackerel for households will be sold through the retail outlets and caters to the busy household so the product comes prepared, fresh and ready to cook!
In total we have just over 800 people working for Namsov and Trachurus Fishing which is our sister company in the horse mackerel industry. We have 306 are Namibian crew, 190 are foreign nationals, 245 are fixed term employees, 16 are trainees in South Africa and Russia and 48 office based staff.
In June 2014, we invested NAD 13 million in this cause by chartering the “Atlantic Challenge” from Ireland to investigate the possibility of trawling with a newer generation Refrigerated Sea Water (RSW) Trawler. This exercise was undertaken as a serious investment into creating value addition, but in the right way and sustainably so. Sadly the request for experimental quota was declined by the Ministry of Fisheries, further increasing the cost of the experiment. Nonetheless, we are now undertaking further experiments to ensure that the quality of the fish are preserved while caught by RSW Trawlers and brought onshore for processing and value addition. A small value addition facility has been established where we employ 26 Namibians whilst our feasibility study on Value Addition is being completed for year end 2014 to warrant the possible NAD 500 million facility investment we intend to undertake subject to the outcome of the feasibility study and approval of the shareholders. According to this plan Namsov’s current fleet of midwater factory vessels will be replaced by RSW Trawlers. The unprocessed fish will be brought to shore and processed in a factory to be constructed alongside the existing United Fishing cannery. This challenging but wonderful vision will enable Namsov to undertake value adding initiatives such as canning, smaller retail packages, gutted, deboned, filleted, breaded, cured, smoked, salted and dried production.
Where we are now
A journey of a thousand steps starts with one step. To date, we have had a few, some forward and some back. What makes us proud is the effort, the empowerment and the ethics we have employed to sustainably provide a return on investment to all our stakeholders involved, including the Government of the Republic of Namibia.
Our commitment as a majority owned Namibian company to Namibia is multi-faceted dynamic and unwavering, despite challenges along the way. We continue to ensure that we do our best with the national resource allocated to us by our Government to ensure that the value of the Horse Mackerel we harvest benefits Namibia in a true, sustained and empowered manner.