Our Islands, Our Oceans - Cabo Verde (narrated by Lambert Wilson, actor, activist)


Cabo Verde - an island chain off the west coast of Africa, characterized by captivating coastlines, stunning beaches and peaceful seaside villages. It is home to over 500-thousand people. Many, like Aguinaldo Dias, rely on fisheries for their employment and livelihoods. As well as being a major source of employment, fishing is an integral part of the rich and vibrant culture of Cabo Verde. The picture postcard island draws tourists, predominantly from Europe. Tchuca Mendes, who sells fish on the bustling tourist island of Sal, explains the competition local fishermen and fish vendors face from foreign imports. Mendes says a market near the sea with cold storage infrastructure is needed to ensure the quality and freshness of fish. Fishermen and fish vendors are working more closely with the government to improve food safety and standards, thereby working to ensure restaurants buy more fish locally By setting up direct supply chains to the hotels and restaurants catering to tourists, Cabo Verde’s fisherfolk could increase their incomes, something beneficial to all. Cabo Verde, like many small island developing states, sees its fishing communities, fish vendors, the commercial sector and the government working closely together to improve fishing operations and, create new employment opportunities and improve economic conditions on the island. All of us can play a role in supporting coastal communities. When travelling, we can choose locally caught fish and try new species of fish that we may not eat at home, but feature in local recipes and traditions. This can support local coastal communities – the men, women and children who rely upon fisheries for their livelihoods.

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