Global Forum on Food Security and Nutrition (FSN Forum)

Dr. Elyse Mills

International Collective in Support of Fishworkers (ICSF)

On behalf of the International Collective in Support of Fishworkers (ICSF), we have a few additional points to add to the recommendations we posted last week. These are in relation to the discussion on pages 79-80 on ‘Fisheries policy and investment’, in order to indicate the breadth of the topic:

  1. Millions on people depend on fisheries and related trades – most of these are in small-scale fisheries. The emphasis of governments on industrialization and large-scale fisheries is negatively impacting SSF and their food security through (a) depletion of inshore resources (which is mentioned); (b) accumulation by the few at the expense of the many; (c) pollution that is affecting marine and inland ecosystems;
  2. The incidence of ‘ocean grab’ and ‘coastal grab’, which reduces the life chances and food security of SSF (see related references below) through blue economy developments (meaning privatization) along the coast.
  3. Distant water fleets which affect inequality between nations (particularly between the Global North and South);
  4. There is a great deal of literature on the contribution of aquatic foods to food security and nutrition, including of the poor, which can be drawn upon. Shakuntala Thilsted’s (winner of the 2021 World Food Prize) is one example. FAO also has a report on small, low-cost fish for food security and nutrition that is coming out in 2023.
  5. The role of fishers’ movements (locally, nationally and internationally) in addressing not only sustainability issues in fisheries, but inequality issues too.


Related References

  • Brent, Z., Barbesgaard, M., & Pedersen, C. (2018). The Blue Fix: Unmasking the politics behind the promise of blue growth.
  • Bavinck, M., F. Berkes, A. Charles, C. Esteves Dias, P. Nayak, M. Sowman (2017). The impact of coastal grabbing on community conservation – a global reconnaissance. Maritime Studies (MAST), 16:8.
  • Bavinck, M., Ahern, M., Hapke, H.M., Johnson, D.S., Kjellevold, M., Kolding, J., Overå, R. & Schut, T., eds. (2023). Small, low-cost fish for food and nutrition security. Technical Paper. Rome, FAO.
  • Bennett, N. J., Govan, H., & Satterfield, T. (2015). Ocean grabbing. Marine Policy57, 61-68.
  • Mills, E. N. (2018). Implicating ‘fisheries justice’ movements in food and climate politics. Third World Quarterly, 39(7), 1270-1289.
  • Mills, E. N. (2021). The politics of transnational fishers' movements. The Journal of Peasant Studies, 1-26.