This paper evaluates the existing evidence of how and to what extent capture fisheries and aquaculture contribute to food security and poverty reduction. In doing so the authors evaluate the quality and scientific rigor of that evidence, identify the key conclusions that emerge from the literature, and assess whether these conclusions are consistent across the sources.
The Adivasi Fisheries Project, aimed at diversifying livelihood options for resource-poor Adivasi (ethnic) communities in the North and Northwest of Bangladesh, was implemented during 2007–9. Aquaculture and related technologies were introduced to a total of 3,594 resource-poor Adivasi households. Baseline and end-line surveys were applied to assess the changes in their livelihoods following intervention.
The potential of aquaculture to reduce poverty and hunger has been recognised in Africa. However, growth in the sector has been limited up-to-now, providing less than 2% of total fish production. In Eastern and Central Africa, the slow growth has been caused by a number of factors, including a development focus on resource poor farmers rather than small and medium enterprises, a lack of focus on the entire fish value chain (feed, seed, processing and marketing), as well as weak governance and policy environments.
Significant changes in our understanding of the interrelationships between aquaculture and poverty have occurred in the last decade. In particular, there is a growing realization that the impacts of aquaculture need to be assessed from a value-chain perspective rather than through a narrow production focus. In recent years, understandings of poverty and the forms, outcomes and importance of aquaculture have also shifted. Terms in current use are first clarified, including those related to scale and location of aquaculture.
This report is a contribution to an assessment of the current status of agriculture in Cambodia, focusing on the linkages between agriculture and water, mainly in the form of irrigation. It seeks to view current government policies on agriculture and irrigation in the context of experiences on the ground, as communicated through the many field studies that cover varied aspects of performance in the agriculture sector and irrigation schemes.
Two opposing views exist in the literature on the potential role that international fish trade plays in economic development. While some claim that fish trade has a pro-poor effect, others denounce the negative effect of fish export on local populations’ food security and doubt its contributions to the macro-economy. In this paper, we explore this debate in sub-Saharan Africa. Our analysis did not find any evidence of direct negative impact of fish trade on food security; neither did it find evidence that international fish trade generates positive, pro-poor outcomes.
Fishing for prawn (Macrobrachium rosenbergii) postlarvae is a major contributor to the livelihoods of the coastal poor in Bangladesh, including women. A study of coastal livelihoods along the lower Pasur River in southwest Bangladesh indicates that on average 40% of total annual income comes from postlarvae fishing during the few months involved. However, indiscriminate fishing of wild postlarvae, with high levels of by-catch, has an impact on biodiversity in coastal ecosystems. This has provoked imposition of restrictions on postlarvae collection.
In line with its mandate of poverty reduction and sustainable development, the WorldFish Center is orienting its research towards high impact scientific activity. Identifying such activities is the task of prospective impact assessment, in turn based on impact pathway analysis. The paper describes a framework for analyzing benefits from aquatic resources research, the relevant research categories, pathways to impact by category, and indicators along each pathway that can be estimated in order to quantify probable research impact.
The combined population of five South Asian countries (India, Bangladesh, Pakistan, Sri Lanka and Nepal) is expected to rise from the current 1.5 billion to 2.2 billion by 2050, with the biggest increases occurring in rural areas where the poorest people live. These five South Asian countries have great potential to expand and intensify aquaculture to meet rising demand and contribute to poverty reduction and rural development. Further, fish and shellfish production can play a vital role in the national economy and international trade.
Cambodia is highly vulnerable to the effects of climate change on fisheries, which supply livelihoods for millions and up to 80% of all animal protein in the diet. Most fisheries are highly variable by nature and subject to environmental change, including climate change. Hydropower dam construction, intensified fishing pressure and macroeconomic drivers are likely to affect Cambodian fisheries more immediately and visibly than climate change.