Fish demand and supply projections.

It has been predicted that the global demand for fish for human consumption will increase by more than 50% over the next 15 years. The FAO has projected that the increase in supply will originate primarily from marine fisheries, aquaculture and to a lesser extent from inland fisheries, but with a commensurate price increase. However, there are constraints to increased production in both marine and inland fisheries, such as overfishing, overexploitation limited potential increase and environmental degradation due to industrialization. The author sees aquaculture as having the greatest potential for future expansion. Aquaculture practices vary depending on culture, environment, society amd sources of fish. Inputs are generally low-cost, ecologically efficient and the majority of aquaculture ventures are small-scale and family operated. In the future, advances in technology, genetic improvement of cultured species, improvement in nutrition, disease management, reproduction control and environmental management are expected along with opportunities for complimentary activities with agriculture, industrial and wastewater linkages. The main constraints to aquaculture are from reduced access to suitable land and good quality water due to pollution and habitat degradation. Aquaculture itself carries minimal potential for aquatic pollution. State participation in fisheries production has not proven to be the best way to promote the fisheries sector. The role of governments is increasingly seen as creating an environment for economic sectors to make an optimum contribution, through support in areas such as infrastructure, research, training and extension and a legal framework. The author feels that a holistic approach integrating the natural and social sciences is called for when fisheries policy is being examined.


Svendrup-Jensen, S. (1997)
NAGA 20 (3/4): 77-78; 94-96