Fresh fish for Russia
Located on the edge of Ryazan, a west Russian city 300km east of Moscow, a private Fish Farm business has been set up producing carp and this year, 2021 sturgeon in a freshwater lake. The business farms fish within a freshwater lake which has been adapted to suit a fish farm environment. The fish are cultivated from small fry to mature fish which are sold alive in special transporters to the local community via a government supply network of local markets and restaurants.
Russia is still under a number of global sanctions which means that the availability of fresh fish in the central parts of Russia is limited. The fish farm business saw there was a market for locally produced fresh fish. Most fish supplies arrived in a frozen format from the far east of Russia, so here was an opportunity to provide better quality fish, improve the environment and to support the local supply chain, clients, regulators and partners.
Another objective was to provide recreational activities connected to the lake including personal rod fishing as a leisure activity to the local community. Both the fish farm and the provision of the leisure activities provide jobs and income to local people connected with the maintenance of the fish farm and the maintenance of the lake.
The vision behind the Fish Farm is a Russian faith driven entrepreneur - Danil Slobodenko, the owner of the land and the lake. Danil wanted to create a business model to engage faith and the church with communities that could be shared with other faith driven entrepreneurs in the Russia. Faith driven businesses are in short supply in Russia, so this fish farm and its greater vision to improve the lives of the local community serves as a model for other faith driven entrepreneurs to follow.
Mikhail Korney, Director of Eastern European, Youth for Christ, met Danil Slobodenko, through the Moscow Regional Director, Vladimir Zuev. Both individuals are connected by a collateral partnership agreement to the business registration which Danil owns as a Russian entrepreneur.
The Fish Farm at the lake has provided the opportunity to invite business contacts, churches, company staff and all their families to weekend events - camping, fishing, relaxing, creating space to build relationships. Three local churches and their pastors plus other church youth groups from Moscow have all used the lake for retreats and organised meetings.
Danil is demonstrating servant leadership to his entire business network. When guests visit the lake at weekends Danil is involved in the cooking facilities – baked fish, organising events, etc. The lake is the hub around which a new masterplan and community vision will evolve over the next ten years. 126 acres of community chalets, retirement homes, employment managing the facilities, café and leisure fishing spots are planned.
This project has involved 35 individuals to date and has so far helped 10 through the creation of local jobs. Building 5 reservoirs has improved the growth of the fish, in addition to the water regulation benefits associated with building a dam and irrigation devices. Russian fresh fish lovers will also be provided with a sustainable source of freshly caught fish to enjoy at mealtimes.
The fish farm is providing fish for two local government supply networks, plus supplying fish fry for two other fish farms. One farm is 550 km and the other 360km from Ryazan and so increases the reach and the connections of the network, with a faith driven leader at the centre.
Angello’s involvement with FiftyFourTwo (another investing company) has made the fish farm a viable business proposition. Working with Danil who is investing both his money and our investment to be a springboard for a new model of doing business in Russia.