UN: Aquatic Farming Production Is More Than Fishing

02:29 June 14, 2024

UN: Aquatic Farming Production Is More Than Fishing

The number of aquatic animals harvested worldwide by farming is now higher than the amount fished from the wild, the United Nations found.

Farmed aquatic animals include fish, shrimp, clams, and others.

The U.N.’s Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) recently released a report on fisheries and aquaculture, or farming in water. The State of the World’s Fisheries and Aquaculture Report noted that, for the first time ever, more aquatic animals came from farming.

In 2022, the report said more than 167 million metric tons of aquatic animals were caught and harvested. It found the amount captured in the wild dropped to 82.5 million metric tons as farm production rose to 85.6 million.

Asia was the source of more than 90 percent of all aquaculture production of aquatic animals, the FAO added.

Some 90 percent of aquatic animals that are farmed or fished are for humans to eat. The rest are for other uses like feed for other animals or fish oils.

Experts say it is not surprising that the number of farmed fish is now higher. The amount caught from waters has not increased much over the last 30 years — largely because of limits in nature.

Manuel Barange leads FAO's fisheries and aquaculture division. He said aquaculture has gained from a growing recognition of the nutritional benefits found in aquatic animals. Food taken from aquatic animals also creates a smaller environmental impact than food taken from land animals.

The most common fish that are captured in the world's oceans, seas, rivers, lakes and ponds include Peruvian anchovies, skipjack tuna and Alaskan pollock. Freshwater carp, oysters, clams, shrimp, tilapia and prawns are among the most harvested animal life.

I’m Dan Novak.

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