At the FAO’s Committee on Fisheries in Trondheim, IFFO highlights the continuing importance of marine ingredients in aquaculture development

Neil Auchterlonie represented IFFO at the 10th Session of the FAO’s Committee on Fisheries (CoFI) Sub-Committee on Aquaculture, held in Trondheim over the 23rd to 27th August 2019.  The meeting headlined the growing importance of aquaculture in providing protein and food for the growing human population, and included a packed agenda running over 3.5 days of deliberations and discussions.  It was a meeting designed to follow up on the strategic priorities agreed in the previous meeting in Brazil in 2015 and was timed to coincide with the week of the AquaNor event, also held in Trondheim.

The meeting had the usual reference to the importance of aquaculture in providing nutrition for the global population.  More than 550 species are farmed in aquaculture systems, growing at 3.5% annually and aquaculture production exceeds that of wild fisheries in all species groups other than marine finfish.  There was interesting reference to malnutrition, which included the obvious under-nourishment issues (although prevalence has stabilized) as well as the less obvious nutritional disorders such as obesity and the role that aquaculture may be able to play in providing healthy food.  The FAO note increasing competition for scarce resources, especially water, and a need to reduce wastes, losses, emissions, and improve multiple use of resources.  Integrated aquaculture/innovation/disease prevention and management/waste reduction and recycling are important.  There was consistent reference to the UN’s SDG Goals – especially the phrase  “leave no one behind”. Aquaculture will continue to play an important role in meeting needs for fish and fish products for an ever-increasing human population.  The FAO is developing sustainable aquaculture guidelines to provide practical guidance to governments to enable aquaculture to engage with the 2030 agenda for SDGs.

IFFO holds observer status at these meetings, and this was an opportunity to get in some of the key messages regarding our work in two interventions, the text of which may be found at the bottom pf the page.  It was an opportunity to highlight the continuing importance of marine ingredients in aquafeed, hence aquaculture development.