Empowering Samoa’s Seafood Entrepreneurs: Graduates Celebrate Success in Micro-Qualification Training


Graduates with USP PEUMP Project team and Assistant Chief Executive Officer (A.C.E.O) for the Fisheries Division at the Ministry of Agriculture and Fisheries.

22 November, 2023, Apia, Samoa – Fish and fishing are important to Samoa, both economically and socially. In 2007 over half of all exports of the country consisted of fishery products and about a quarter of all households received some income from fishing. To that effect, we are thrilled to announce the completion of Samoa’s first batch of graduates in the micro qualification training on establishing and operating a small seafood business.

This was made possible through the European Union and the Government of Sweden funded Pacific-European Union Marine Partnership (PEUMP) Programme.

“Food security and the well-being of farmers and fishers drive most of the programs of the Ministry of Agriculture and Fisheries.” said Roseti Imo, Assistant Chief Executive Officer (A.C.E.O) for the Fisheries Division at the Ministry of Agriculture and Fisheries. “Having a thriving small business community that can add value to what we produce from the land and the ocean will be beneficial not just to the business owners but will certainly be a wonderful injection into the Samoan economy.”

The micro-qualification is targeted at small-scale seafood businesses, entrepreneurs, market vendors, fishers and seafood sellers.

According to USP PEUMP Researcher and coordinator of this Samoa training, Sera Vaniqi, “it’s critical that professionals in the field have access to relevant and practical training as the seafood industry continues to evolve. Our Micro-Qualification in Establishing and Operating a Small Seafood Business is tailored to meet these needs, equipping individuals with the knowledge and skills to thrive in this dynamic sector.”

The holder of this qualification will gain knowledge and skills on the fundamentals of establishing and operating a small business, marketing for small business, developing customer-driven marketing strategies, basic bookkeeping, and writing a business plan.

Lolofi Poalaga, a small seafood business owner, expressed gratitude for the eye-opening training, noting its potential to expand and think innovatively about business operations.

“Our business so far has been running to sustain our family’s needs.” she said. “This training has opened my eyes to the possibility of expanding our business further. To think outside the box.”

This training will be followed by other upskilling programmes such as seafood safety and quality, value chain analysis, upscaling community-based management, financial literacy and leadership trainings.

USP is one of four key implementing partners of the PEUMP Programme, a EUR 45million program which promotes sustainable management and sound ocean governance for food security and economic growth while addressing climate change resilience and conservation of marine biodiversity.

It follows a comprehensive approach, integrating issues related to ocean fisheries, coastal fisheries, community development, marine conservation and capacity building under one single regional action. The PEUMP Programme is housed within the Institute of Marine Resources within the School of Agriculture, Geography, Environment, Ocean and Natural Sciences (SAGEONS).

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