AgResults Indonesia Aquaculture Challenge Project Announces Year 2 Prize Winners

June 13, 2023

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To mark the end of a successful second year, the AgResults Indonesia Aquaculture Challenge Project held a series of lessons learned and prize award events from June 6-9 in Jepara, Indonesia. The Pay-for-Results prize competition encourages competing businesses in Indonesia to deliver aerator and auto-feeder technologies to smallholder farmers. Four competitors, PT Multidaya Teknologi Nusantara (eFishery), PT Venambak Kail Dipantara, CV Republik Vannamei, and PT Bumi Wirasatraya Sejahtera, qualified for prizes with 537 sales and 3,650 rentals, winning a total of USD $159,101. In addition to sharing lessons learned, there were several technology trial and induction events and competitor selection for the upcoming year.

In Indonesia, AgResults is aiming to overcome multiple challenges in the country’s aquaculture sector related to feed cost, water quality, and quality of fish stocks—all of which have historically limited smallholder aquaculture practices’ efficiency, particularly via traditional ponds. This inefficiency not only limits productivity but also has an adverse impact on the environment and sustainability of fish farming. By increasing adoption of on-farm technologies such as feeders and aerators, the prize competition aims to strengthen value chain links and boost smallholder farmer income. In just two years, these benefits have started to emerge, particularly around increased efficiency in the use of feed.

“After a slow start to Year 1 of the competition, due largely to COVID-19 restrictions on movement and the resulting pandemic-induced economic downturn, we have seen significant improvement in competitor performance and smallholder farmer uptake of the technologies in Year 2,” said Kimya Nia of the AgResults Secretariat. “The goals for today’s event are to provide everyone with an update on lessons learned from this year of the competition and recognize and award four successful competitors for their performance.”

In Year 2, the four winning competitors sold 547 units and rented 3,650 units of technology to smallholder farmers in Java and outside Java, with the highest target of aquaculture commodities being tilapia and pangasius followed by vannamei shrimp and catfish.

Dr. Imam Musthofa Zainudin, Director of the Marine and Fisheries Program at Yayasan WWF Indonesia, said, “Increasing the productivity by smallholder farmers requires the support of various sectors involved in the aquaculture value chain, including the availability of high-quality seeds, aquaculture technology, technical assistance, and the availability of best aquaculture practice guidelines to support the continuity of aquaculture business and a healthy environment.”

This cross-sector perspective has positioned participating companies to improve their approach and grow their business.

“AgResults has helped us become a catalyst in accelerating the adoption of our auto-feeder by smallholder farmers,” said a representative from Competitor PT Multidaya Teknologi Nusantara (eFishery). “As our auto-feeder rentals have increased 4-5x from 200-500 units in Year 1 to 3,300 in Year 2, so has our impact in helping small farmers achieve intensification. We are growing together.”

More than 1,900 smallholder farmers have adopted aquaculture technologies to use resources more efficiently: Aerators can efficiently use water and land, auto-feeders can efficiently use feed. Beyond improving smallholder farmers’ productivity and income, these technologies strengthen the sector’s sustainability.

“As a recent start-up, we have faced a lot of challenges, but getting involved in this project has challenged us to improve our technology more quickly by connecting us to smallholder farmers across the country,” said a representative from PT Venambak Kail Dipantara, another competitor. “We plan to invest this prize money into the business to improve our aerators for Year 3.”

In the upcoming year, the competition aims to encourage even more companies and distributors to reach smallholder farmers to improve their use of innovative aquaculture technology and water quality management in Indonesia.

The Indonesia Aquaculture Challenge Project is part of AgResults, a $152 million collaborative initiative between the governments of Australia, Canada, the United Kingdom, the United States, the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, and the World Bank Group that uses prize competitions to incentivize the private sector to overcome market barriers and create lasting change. Under AgResults’ Pay-for-Results model, these competitions encourage actors to achieve predetermined results thresholds and quality for monetary prizes.

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