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A Glance at the Global Rise of Shrimp

by 5m Editor
26 January 2009, at 12:00am

GLOBE - Shrimp is now the most important internationally traded fishery commodity in terms of value. A new global study on the development and present status of shrimp fisheries analyses the global impact on the industry.

The recent world shrimp catch is about 3.4 million tonnes per year, with Asia as the most noteworthy area for shrimp fishing. World production of shrimp, both captured and farmed, is about 6 million tonnes, of which about 60 percent enters the world market.

In many tropical developing countries, it is the most valuable fishery export; the employment aspect is also significant. The economic importance of shrimp needs to be reconciled with considerable concern about the environmental impacts of shrimp fisheries, says the FAO Fisheries Technical Paper, Global study of shrimp fisheries.

Observations are made about many aspects of shrimp fisheries. These include: the development of shrimp fishing; structure of the shrimp fisheries; target species; catch/ effort; economic contributions; trade; bycatch; fuel; biological aspects; impacts on the physical environment; impacts of large-scale shrimp fishing on small-scale fisheries; management; enforcement; research; data reporting; and the impacts of shrimp farming on shrimp fishing.

A major conclusion of the study is that there are mechanisms, instruments and models to enable effective mitigation of many of the difficulties associated with shrimp fishing, taking a precautionary and ecosystem approach to fisheries. The inference is that, with an appropriate implementation capacity, shrimp fishing, including shrimp trawling, is indeed manageable.

In many countries, however, weak agencies dealing with fisheries, lack of political will and inadequate legal foundations cause failures in the management of shrimp fisheries. The report makes specific recommendations in a few key areas: the management of small-scale shrimp fisheries, capacity reduction; and access to the fishery.

The ten countries selected are: Australia, Cambodia, Indonesia, Kuwait, Madagascar, Mexico, Nigeria, Norway, Trinidad and Tobago and the United States of America. The results of the country reviews are combined with specialized studies on important topics related to shrimp fisheries to produce the major findings of the overall study.

Further Reading

- You can view the full report by clicking here.

5m Editor