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Madagascar provides great-quality Madagascar crabs for local and international consumption. Artisan fishermen are the biggest sources of the raw fresh Madagascar crabs.
There are over 17 species of Madagascar crabs. The main species produced in Madagascar are the freshwater crabs sourced from the inland water ecosystems scattered across the state. They include streams, ponds, river lines and marshy grounds.
Madagascar obtains considerable revenue the sale of revenue annually. The country exported crabs packed in various forms worth approximately $8.3 million. Exporters rely on skilled workers who have experience in crabs capturing. The country however, experiences various problems in the sector that include overexploitation, poor fishing means and illegal fishing. Wading of foreign companies applying illegal blasting methods which have adversely affected the sector has also been a big challenge. Freshwater Madagascar crabs are extensively sourced from the northern parts of the island.
Madagascar crabs are availed for export in various forms. They include:
- Raw- This entails exporting Madagascar crabs in their live or fresh forms. It ensures clients get their hands on the crabs in their natural form.
- Frozen- Exporting frozen crabs is also one of the most common form. It helps extend the commodity’s shelf life. It also entails shelled or not shelled crabs cooked by steaming.
- Other forms used to export Madagascar crabs include chilled, dried, salted, smoked or in brine which is inclusive of shelled and cooked crabs.
There are tons of menus offering crabs in eating joints lying across the world. Crab meat is one of the most delicious cuisines. Nevertheless, its consumption adds several nutritional values to the human body due to the essential minerals, fats and nutrients it constitutes. Elements found in crab meat range from proteins, vitamin B, selenium to omega-3 fatty acids. Enough monthly or weekly intake of crab meat provides the body with these elements which help reduce inflammation and on the other hand act as a booster for mental activities. Its high phosphorous and calcium concentration enhances teeth and bone health.
There are several types of Madagascar crabs that are provided for local and external consumption. They include:
Madagascar mangrove crabs– These fish species are abundant in the Tulear region villages lying South West of Madagascar. Over the years their demand in the global market has increased tremendously. The species are so highly valued and sell the most worldwide. Madagascar production of mangroves stretches over 325,000 hectares. However, the country is only able to exploit only a third of that are. Their total mangroves habitat accounts for 20% of the continents mangroves. The current mangrove production could hit even greater heights if the nation managed to realize its full potential.
Foza– It is mainly sourced from the Antsiranana Province. Foza ambohitra is medium-sized and usually thrives in in the humid, mixed dry deciduous forests in the regions located in northern Madagascar. They are characterized by anterolateral margins and their sternal sulcus are U-shaped and complete.
Madagapotamon humberti– It has very distinctive features compared to other Madagascan species. The crab is long-legged, colorful and lacks flagellum on the exopod. Some have pink legs, yellow carapace and chelipeds consisting white fingers. Those from the Montagne des Français Reserve are distinctive due to the fact that they come with an all-white carapace.
There are also other species such as Hydrothelphusa, Boreas, Skelosophusa, Marojejy and Malagasya.
Harvesting and Fishing tools
Artisan fishermen are supposed to get permits before delving in the trade. Fishing commences only when there is a guarantee the crabs have fully matured. The Malagasy Ministry of Fishing Resources has stringent rules to be followed when it comes to crabs fishing activities. The fishermen are required to catch crabs of a minimum size of 11 centimeters. It is a structure which helps ensure sustainability of the crab sector. It also promotes sustainable fishing models.
Artisan fishermen account for over 80% of fish produced in Madagascar. Traditional fishing activities are largely confined to the offshore waters due to technological limitation they constantly face. It is estimated that over 200,000 households rely on the fisheries sector to sustain their families. Traditional fishing activities are prevalent in the west coast. There is a wide range of traditional fishing tools. They range from traditional traps, gill nets, hand lines to long-lines. They use dugout canoes. Artisan fishers apply the use of canoes and motorboats to carry out their activities. Notably, there is limited use of hooks because at times they hurt the crabs. The width sizes of the mesh are below ten centimeters to avoid capturing small crabs.
Their fishing tools are way superior compared to the traditional ones. They include brand new imported nets, rods, hooks and live baits.
Packing, storage and transportation
Madagascar crabs are transported in burlap bags. The multiple advantages of such bags include their ability to retain moisture better and not heating up too easily. Fishermen cover the crabs with leaves of mangrove or fabric while transporting them off the large water sources. They are also frequently sprinkled with sea water to preserve their freshness.
After fishing Madagascar crabs are thoroughly washed with pure water. Sorting follows which entails picking only the healthiest crabs. They are also grouped based on their species, size as well as the physical attributes. They are then placed inside freezer bags wrappers filled with ice. They are then arranged in cartoons fitted with iced interiors. Later, clear labels are automatically placed on the bags. They indicate species, packing condition and the date of expiry. They are stored in dimly-lit rooms with coo, dry conditions. The same conditions-helps crabs retain their freshness, are maintained while transporting the cargo to the Ivato International airport for shipment in special vans.
If you are looking for a source that will meet all your expectations as a client particularly in terms of quality, then cut the search and focus on Madagascar crabs. The prices on the other hand are attractive and relatively fair. The good thing is that once you order by the click of that button on the website, the cargo reaches you within 1-2 days following dispatch. Make your order!
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