Aquatic food production key to combating hunger: FAO

With global fisheries and aquaculture production at a record high,  aquaculture accounts for half the aquatic foods we eat and offers great potential to feed our growing population

Aquatic food production is more efficient, has less impact on the environment and emits lower greenhouse gas emissions that most land-based animal protein production systems, said QU Dongyu, Director-General of the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO).

The plenary statement at the UN Ocean Conference said achieving Sustainable Development Goal 14 on Life Below Water is essential not only for the ocean, but also to reduce poverty and eradicate hunger.

“While the world faces daunting challenges, there is great opportunity in the fisheries and aquaculture sector,” the FAO Director-General said in the statement, adding: “Sustainable and inclusive aquatic food systems improve rights, incomes and livelihoods of fishing and fish farming communities.”

Aquatic foods offer highly accessible and affordable sources of animal proteins and micronutrients, playing a vital role in the food and nutrition security of many people across the world, particularly vulnerable coastal populations.

But the FAO Director-General underlined that without urgent action to conserve, protect, restore, and sustainably manage marine ecosystems, the ocean will not be able to maintain its significant role in providing food security and economic prosperity.

image credit- shutterstock

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