Against a backdrop of global economic uncertainty, this issue of The State of World Fisheries and Aquaculture highlights the major role and challenges facing fisheries and aquaculture worldwide.
With a steadily rising demand for fish and fish products, the supply of fish as human food hit a record high in 2008, underlining its significance in contributing to food security and nutrition as a source of high-quality, affordable animal protein in particular. International trade in fish also topped previous values, pointing to the sector's continued important contribution to economic expansion and human well-being. Aquaculture, despite a falling growth rate in recent years, remains the fastest-growing animal-food-producing sector and is set to overtake capture fisheries as a source of food fish. Overall production of the sector continues to grow.
This publication analyses and reviews the latest available global statistics and trends in fisheries and aquaculture. It explores the important, yet often underestimated, role of inland fisheries, particularly in many small communities where they make a vital contribution to poverty alleviation and livelihood security. A broader look at the issues affecting fisheries and aquaculture emphasizes the growing need to focus on the many facets of policy and governance and examines the impacts of climate change, biodiversity loss, quality certification and product traceability on the sector