FAO closes the International Year of Artisanal Fisheries and Aquaculture with public policy recommendations to strengthen the sector

FAO closes the International Year of Artisanal Fisheries and Aquaculture with public policy recommendations to strengthen the sector

The Organization established priorities to continue supporting fishermen and fish farmers and enhance their role and contribution to food security, alleviation of rural poverty and the responsible and harmonious management of natural resources.

Costa Rica, March 31, 2023 – The Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO) today closed the year-long global campaign for the International Year of Fisheries and Artisanal Aquaculture 2022, focused on small-scale artisanal fishers, fish farmers, and fish workers, underlining the need to maintain momentum on this matter.

With more than 260 events held in 68 countries, the International Year of Artisanal Fisheries and Aquaculture 2022 “celebrated the millions of people who work in small-scale artisanal fisheries and aquaculture – including nearly 45 million women fishers artisanal – which produce 40% of all the fish we eat,” said FAO Director-General QU Dongyu at the closing ceremony, adding: “They are guardians of valuable ecosystems, and long-standing traditions and cultures.” .

In the case of the FAO Regional Office for Latin America and the Caribbean, the organization closed AIPAA with an event in the framework of the XVIII Session of the Commission on Small-Scale Fisheries, Artisanal and Aquaculture of Latin America and the Caribbean ( COPPESALC).

The COPPESAALC took place from March 29 to 31 in San José, Costa Rica, and its objectives were to report the measures adopted regarding the agreements of the previous meeting, and to reflect collectively on the issues that concern the sustainability and contribution of fishing and aquaculture to food security, the alleviation of rural poverty and the responsible and harmonious management of natural resources. This, in line with the needs of the member countries of the Commission, the regional priorities of FAO and the objectives of the UN Sustainable Development Agenda.

In this context, FAO launched three publications on artisanal fishing and aquaculture, which were carried out based on surveys and interviews with people linked to fishing and aquaculture in ten countries in South America.

The three reports adopt the gender approach and demonstrate, through data and the review of programs at the country level, the relevant participation of women in the value chains of small-scale artisanal fishing and aquaculture in South America. as well as the important challenge posed by advancing in a sustainable and systemic manner in reducing the gender gaps present in the sector.

At the regional level, among the outstanding achievements of the year, a network of aquaculture farmers was created in Mesoamerica, champions of fishing and artisanal aquaculture were promoted in the Caribbean, and fish consumption and associativity events related to the sectors were held.

“The AIPAA celebration was an important recognition for women and men in small-scale artisanal fisheries and aquaculture, and for workers in the sector’s food system, who significantly contribute to achieving a world without hunger.” In this context, “the publications we are launching today provide us with a more complete picture, with concrete recommendations to strengthen the sector and to unlock key issues,” explained José Aguilar Manjarrez, FAO Fisheries and Aquaculture Officer.

Small scale, great value

Small-scale artisanal fishing and aquaculture (or fish farming and shellfishing), carried out mostly by families, constitute a huge subsector. Artisanal fisheries provide livelihoods for almost 500 million people around the world, 95% of them in the global South.

However, their workforce includes some of the communities most vulnerable to environmental degradation, biodiversity loss, climate impacts and economic crises, as they contribute to the management of the aquatic resources of the oceans, rivers and lakes of the world

To raise awareness of their role, the FAO-led campaign, with the support of a wide range of partners, helped forge and strengthen alliances between small-scale artisanal fisheries and aquaculture workers and other stakeholders. Examples of this are the Ibero-American Network for Small-Scale Artisanal Fishing (RIPAPE) and the Maghreb and North African Platform for Artisanal Fishing.

The AIPAA 2022 Final Report highlights the significant number of declarations, calls to action and demonstrations made by partners, at the national, regional and global levels, in addition to offering recommendations to continue supporting the subsector. These include the areas of environmental, social and economic sustainability, governance, gender equality and equity, food security and nutrition, resilience and youth participation.

Although AIPAA 2022 is drawing to a close, “it should not be the end, but a new beginning in which we continue to amplify the voices of small-scale artisanal fishers and continue to support the development of inclusive national fisheries and aquaculture plans and strategies. small-scale artisanal activities”, said the Director-General of the FAO.

Check the posts here:

«Characterization of small-scale artisanal fisheries and aquaculture in South America and public policy recommendations«, is a study that characterizes and evaluates the sector in the region, and makes public policy recommendations for its strengthening. The methodology included the application of surveys and complementary interviews with the national fishing and aquaculture authorities, with people who work in the sector, and with representatives of non-governmental organizations.

«Public policy recommendations for the sustainable development of small-scale artisanal fisheries and aquaculture in South America – Policy guidelines for authorities» is addressed to the national fisheries and aquaculture authorities in the countries of the region. These recommendations are aligned with the implementation of the provisions and recommendations of international instruments, such as the Sustainable Development Goals and the Voluntary Guidelines to achieve the sustainability of small-scale fisheries, in the context of food security and poverty eradication. .


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