The new State of World Fisheries and Aquaculture report urged for more work to rein in over-fishing, just as global per capita fish consumption has risen above 20 kilogrammes a year, reports NaijaAgroNet.
Global per capita fish consumption, NaijaAgroNet gathered rose above 20 kilogrammes per year for the first time, thanks to stronger aquaculture supply and firm demand, record hauls for some key species and reduced wastage, according to a new FAO report published today.
“Yet despite notable progress in some areas, the state of the world's marine resources has not improved, the latest edition of the UN agency's The State of World Fisheries and Aquaculture (SOFIA) says that almost a third of commercial fish stocks are now fished at biologically unsustainable levels, triple the level of 1974,” a press statement from Food and Agriculture Organisation (FAO) highlighted.
NaijaAgroNet also said that global total capture fishery production in 2014 was 93.4 million tonnes, including output from inland waters, up slightly over the previous two years. Just as Alaska pollock was the top species, replacing Anchoveta for the first time since 1998 and offering evidence that effective resource management practices have worked well.
“Record catches for four highly valuable groups - tunas, lobsters, shrimps and cephalopods - were reported in 2014,” FAO said.
SOFIA also said that there were around 4.6 million fishing vessels in the world in 2014, 90 per cent of which are in Asia and Africa, and only 64,000 of which were 24 meters or longer.
FAO Director-General José Graziano da Silva said that globally, fish provided 6.7 per cent of all protein consumed by humans, as well as offering a rich source of long-chain omega-3 fatty acids, vitamins, calcium, zinc and iron. Some 57 million people were engaged in the primary fish production sectors, a third of them in aquaculture.
Fishery products, FAO said, accounted for one percent of all global merchandise trade in value terms, representing more than nine percent of total agricultural exports. Worldwide exports amounted to $148 billion in 2014, up from $8 billion in 1976. Developing countries were the source of $80 billion of fishery exports, providing higher net trade revenues than meat, tobacco, rice and sugar combined.
"Life below water, which the Sustainable Development Agenda commits us to conserve, is a major ally in our effort to meet a host of challenges, from food security to climate change. This report shows that capture fisheries can be managed sustainably, while also pointing to the enormous and growing potential of aquaculture to boost human nutrition and support livelihoods with productive jobs," FAO boss said.
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