Sleek and silvery, beloved because of its mild, sweet flesh, and its melt-in-the-mouth belly fat, bangus or milkfish is a favorite Filipino fish. Not only that, it is considered a national icon as it is part of the country’s national heritage.
Today, bangus is making waves in other countries as well. “We export bangus to countries where there are a lot of Filipinos and overseas foreign workers like the Middle East and the United States,” reports Dr. Rafael D. Guerrero III, the executive director of the Philippine Council for Aquatic and Marine Research and Development (PCAMRD).
The Philippines is one of the top bangus producers in the world, along with Indonesia and Taiwan. “Until recently, the country has contributed around 55 percent share of the world bangus production,” the PCAMRD claims.
“Bangus has always been the most important species cultured in the Philippines in terms of area and production,” admits Dr. Guerrero, who also popularized tilapia production and consumption in the country.