Desde Dentro de Cuba.

Distribuido por Cuba Free Press, Inc. - http://www.cubafreepress.org

July 19, 1999.

TWO SNAPPERS SELL FOR MORE THAN AN AVERAGE WORKER'S WAGES By Isabel Rodríguez, Cuba Free Press.

SANTA CLARA - Since the beginning of this year, the Fishing Association of Villa Clara has increased the distribution of first class fish in the so called "model fish markets."

In these markets, snappers are sold for 120 pesos per kilogram (2.2 pounds) and bonito for 20 pesos per kilogram. In a country where the average worker's pay is 200 pesos per month, it can be inferred that very few of them will be able to acquire this precious product from the sea.

For the average Cuban, the popular fish markets exist but according to official reports since the beginning of this year, such markets have only received 494 tons of the 1,030 that were projected. The "tilapia," which of the fresh water species are the most preferred, have disappeared due to the lack of food since every ton of this fish requires 1.8 tons of feed.

As is common in all production areas, the government says "a program of several years is being implemented to reverse the aforementioned situation". And while the "fat cows" - or rather the "fat fish" arrive, Cubans should continue to buy strings of small fish secretly. In the meantime, they would be risking fines from 1000 to 1500 pesos if found in possession of this product!

Isabel Rodríguez, Cuba Free Press.


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