During the last three decades, capture fi sheries production increased from 69 million to 93 million tons; during the same time, world aquaculture production increased from 5 million to 63 million tons (FishStat). Globally, fish currently represents about 16.6 percent of animal protein supply and 6.5 percent of all protein for human consumption (FAO 2012). Fish is usually low in saturated fats, carbohydrates, and cholesterol and provides not only high-value protein but also a wide range of essential micronutrients, including various vitamins, minerals, and polyunsaturated omega-3 fatty acids (FAO 2012). Thus, even in small quantities, provision of fish can be effective in addressing food and nutritional security among the poor and vulnerable populations around the globe.
The model projects that the total fish supply will increase from 154 million tons in 2011 to 186 million tons in 2030. Aquaculture’s share in global supply will likely continue to expand to the point where capture fisheries and aquaculture will be contributing equal amounts by 2030. However, aquaculture is projected to supply over 60 percent of fish destined for direct human consumption.
China will likely increasingly influence the global fish markets. According to the baseline model results, in 2030 China will account for 37 percent of total fi sh production (17 percent of capture production and 57 percent of aquaculture production), while accounting for 38 percent of global consumption of food ﬁsh.
Given the continued growth in production projection, China is expected to remain a net exporter of food fish (net importer of fish if fishmeal is considered). Fast supply growth is also expected from aquaculture in South Asia (including India), Southeast Asia, and Latin America.
Brian Wang is a Futurist Thought Leader and a popular Science blogger with 1 million readers per month. His blog Nextbigfuture.com is ranked #1 Science News Blog. It covers many disruptive technology and trends including Space, Robotics, Artificial Intelligence, Medicine, Anti-aging Biotechnology, and Nanotechnology.
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