FAO Fisheries Department
In addition to striving to meet the United Nations Millennium Development
Goals, the global community is also grappling with other pressing and
complex challenges such as the widespread economic crisis and the
effects of climate change. It is in this context that this edition of
The State of World Fisheries and Aquaculture highlights the vital role
of fisheries and aquaculture in both food and nutrition security as well
as economic expansion. The sector remains a major supplier of
high-quality animal protein and supports the livelihoods and
well-being of more than ten percent of the world’s population.
International trade in fish has reached new peaks as overall production
has continued to rise. Yet, as the document underlines, an array of
problems – ranging from the need for more effective governance to
that of ensuring environmental sustainability – threatens to undermine
the sector’s valuable contribution to alleviating hunger and reducing
Using the latest available statistics on fisheries and aquaculture, this
edition presents a global analysis of the sector’s status and trends. It
also examines broader related issues such as gender, emergency
preparedness and the ecosystem approach to fisheries and aquaculture.
Selected highlights, from ecolabelling and certification to the effects of
fisheries management policies on fishing safety, provide insights on
specific topics. Finally, the document looks at the opportunities and
difficulties for capture fisheries in the coming decades.