Slow business at Fish market in Lent season

By Aruna Lolani ,

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TOUGH GOING: Only a few people selling fish at the Savalalo Market.

TOUGH GOING: Only a few people selling fish at the Savalalo Market. (Photo: Fetalai Tuilulu’u)

The Lent season is usually a good time to do business for members of the local fishing industry.

But this year is a bit different.

Two weeks since Catholics in Samoa started the Lent Season, businesses down at Savalalo has been rather slow.

For the uninitiated, Catholics practice different acts of repentance and spiritual self-discipline during Lent.

One of those disciplines is abstaining from eating meat. That usually means a higher demand for fish.

At the Fish Market yesterday, some of the vendors say there has been no change since the Lent season started.

 “It’s not really everyday that our sale for fish goes up,” said Valu Paulo of Moamoa.

 “It’s true it’s a fasting ritual but most Catholics only come to buy fish on Fridays and Sundays during Lent. This means the rest of the week is normal.”

Valu said the trend continues what has been a tough year.

 “If I’m optimistic, we are expecting that our busiest time would have to be Easter because this is the time a lot of people will come in looking for fish,” he said. 

 “But as you can see, we still have a lot of fish to sell for the day so there’s really no change in the demand from people. 

 “I guess we are different from the ones selling their fish on the road because they can do that all day and most of them practically have all of their fish sold out.

“But for us here at the fish market, this market closes at 3:00p.m.

 “By the time people finish work, the fish market has already been closed so the only place they know where to get fish is random people selling fish on the side of the roads.”

Other fish sellers at the Savalalo market echoed Valu’s comments.

They said that the drop in sale of fish probably highlights the fact that people have very little disposable income to spend.

© Samoa Observer 2016

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