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Publication | 29 November 2018

Sustainable fisheries and aquaculture for food security and nutrition

Fish, either produced through fish farming/aquaculture activity or caught from wild marine or freshwater stocks, is a primary source of protein and essential nutrients, and there is a growing recognition of its nutritional and health-promoting qualities. Fish is one of the most efficient converters of feed into high quality food. Fish and fish-related products provide income and livelihoods for numerous communities across the world.

The contribution of fisheries and aquaculture to food security and nutrition now and in the future is driven by many interactions between several environmental, development, policy and governance issues.

The need to feed a growing global population, and to address a growing demand for fish, puts pressure on natural resources and challenges the sustainability of marine and inland fisheries and of aquaculture development. It also raises several issues relating to the management of fish value chains to realise the right to food of fishing communities and to make fish available for all. It also questions the roles and contributions of the various actors (fishing communities, smallholders and international fishing companies, etc.) in a very diverse and heterogeneous sector, prone to significant inequalities.

In this context, in October 2012, the UN Committee on World Food Security (CFS) requested the High Level Panel of Experts on Food Security and Nutrition (HLPE) to conduct a policy oriented, practical and operational study on the role of sustainable fisheries and aquaculture for food security and nutrition, considering the environmental, social and economic aspects of fisheries including artisanal fisheries, as well as a review of aquaculture development.

Recognizing the importance of fish for food security and nutrition, what should be done to maintain or even enhance this contribution now and in the long term, given the challenges that both the fisheries and aquaculture sectors are facing in terms of sustainability and governance, and given the economic constraints and demographic conditions that they have to respond to? This report seeks to address this question.

Sustainable fisheries and aquaculture for food security and nutrition
(2.62 MB - pdf)

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