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Crab cultivation in Bangladesh

Supporting female crab farmers

Goal: Improve Livelihoods of female crab cultivators in poor, marginalised communities where climate change and rising salinity levels is impacting land productivity

Narkeltola, Mongla, south west Bangladesh

Narkeltola, Mongla, south west Bangladesh

Adapting to the environment

Bangladesh has a large coastal belt to support millions mainly through fishing and aquaculture. Shrimp is the most valuable product, but it has caused grave environmental and socio-economic consequences (like overfishing) leaving many without a sustainable alternative.

VSO has been supporting the crab harvest and culture – particularly crab fattening- as an alternative livelihood. It is a low cost, easily available, nutritious and environmentally friendly activities with a good market in South East Asia and Europe.

The crab farming project is directly contributing to the increased income of women farmers and GDP of Bangladesh.

Sathi Das , Crab farmer in Bangladesh Abir Abdullah

Sathi Das from Narkeltola, Mongla. Sathi started crab farming after getting training organised by VSO in 2014. Before her own farming they lived with no certain income

Training, finance and understanding the market

The project offers training on best practice as well as business skills and a loan is made available to enable women to buy the equipment necessary to run their business successfully. To ensure they are kept up to date with fluctuating market prices, daily SMS advisories are sent to indicate relative pricing, enabling farmers to make hold/sell decisions. The SMS provides specific daily price points on a graded basis (male/female, weight/size).

Other benefits

In line with vocational and business training women also recieve training in other areas including in growing crops and nutritional advice

Recent results 

  • So far the 358 women supported by this project have reported average net annual incomes of GBP £580. 18%* higher than the average annual income of low skilled workers in the country.
  • Earning money for the family is increasing women’s confidence and participation in decision making within the household

*Average salary source via Trading Economics


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