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Villages to play integral part in baby giant clam project

Tuailevaoola Simā Lago’o Vaitautolu

Pago Pago, AMERICAN SAMOA — One of the Atoa o Samoa Talks agreements materialized on Nov. 27, 2023 in American Samoa — the exchange of food security methods and expertise between the Fishery Divisions of the two Samoas — with a gift of 500 baby giant clams from Samoa.

On Tuesday, Nov. 28, 2023, Samoa fishery officials, which includes Marine biologists and technicians with its counterpart personnel from the Aquatic Educational Division of Fisheries in American Samoa checked out the Marine protected area at Fagaalu, as one of the initial sites to spread the clams — their new home if successful.

The initiative seeks to not only protect local marine life, but also have us rely more on our own environment to feed us, rather than the current reliance on food ‘imports’.

An integral part of the initiative strives to develop projects within local village standings, i.e. working together with a village’s council, mayor, matai and aumaga, and at the same time government provides support.

Samoa News should point out that this is not the first time a clam ‘farm’ has been attempted locally. The last known one was located in Nuuuli waters, about 10- 15 years ago. At the time, a marine official who was monitoring the clam farm told Samoa News that there was a problem with illegal harvesting, as well as funding. That farm/ project was eventually abandoned.