Fish is an essential source of protein consumed by human beings since time immemorial. According to the Food and Agriculture Organisation (FAO), fish contributes to 16% of the total protein consumed by human beings. The belief that oceans are limitless and can harbor fish enough to feed the entire population is no longer valid. The human population is increasing at an alarming rate and also the needs and demands. Like any other commodity, the fish business is also converting into industry day by day. This has led to the depletion of wild fish stocks in aquaculture production. Of late, environmentalists are of the view that too much dependence on particular fishes may lead to their extinction soon. Fish As Food: Aquaculture’s Contribution is more
Aquaculture’s And Fisheries
Over the years, the fisheries have failed to keep the pace of the growing demand for fish. Many fisheries have been overfished and made almost empty of their fish population. In 1999 FAO conducted a survey and found that during 1990-1997, there was a rise of 31% in fish consumption. Moreover, this led to more fishing on the part of the harvesters and fish producing companies.
With the depletion of fisheries, the task of catching fish became harder. Many governments and fishermen extended efforts, investment and technology to go for fishing to farther areas. All these efforts have given rise to an “arms race” within the industry of the marine fishery. With the help of radio and satellite navigation, you may now locate fishing grounds quickly. You may also use fish-aggregating devices to enhance the production of fish. Capture fisheries have undergone significant advancements where the newly discovered population of fish are let to face severe stress. Such ruthless acts have resulted in the overexploitation of various fish stocks. The overcapitalization of the fishing fleets concluded that without the government subsidies, capture fisheries might not be commercially viable.
Increasing Demand And Role
A big part of the issue is contributed by the consumer tastes of the First World. There is a huge demand for certain fishes like tuna or swordfish. This exerts a lot of pressure on the whole species and existing stocks. The average size of these fishes is decreasing because they cannot reach a certain age of maturity to reproduce.
To meet the demands of the ever-increasing population, aquaculture has emerged to be the rapidly growing industry in the world. According to FAO, by 2030, aquaculture will produce more than half of the fish needed to feed the entire population. A rise in aquaculture production is observed from 10 million tonnes in 1984 to 38 million tonnes in the year 1998. The amount of increase in production is as important as the way aquaculture produces fish.
Aquaculture has also discovered specific measures of producing fish indoors. This is a part of RAS. It refers to tanks wherein fishes are allowed to breed. The water flowing into these tanks are monitor and recycle around the year. Various methods are there keep the water pure and suitable for the proper growth of the fish.
Aquaculture has a significant contribution towards safeguarding the fish population from getting extinct. It also ensures the availability of fish to human beings in the future.