Zambia is rich in aquatic resources with 15 million ha of water in the form of rivers, lakes and swamps. These water bodies support diverse and widespread capture fisheries, particularly small-scale fisheries (SSF) that make significant contributions to human well-being, food and nutrition as well as to local, national and regional economies. The fisheries sector has a critically important role in food systems in Zambia and in addressing complex and evolving nutritional priorities, as well as the environmental and climate change challenges. Fish from SSF are currently the main supply of fish in Zambia and will likely be so in the coming decades. Fish from SSF are often traded extensively informally, such as in dried form, and provide an accessible and nutritious food source for all, including vulnerable rural and urban populations, and during times of climate-induced agricultural lean periods. Despite this, the catches and services of SSF are underreported and persistently undervalued. Future investment priorities need to shift to safeguard and enhance fisheries, such as through effective governance and reductions in waste and loss, to secure the flow of benefits that underpin sustainable development.