Global consumption of seafood is on the rise. Demand for salmon, specifically, has continued to grow at a yearly average increase of 4.5 percent from 2007 to 2017, outpacing demand for other proteins like poultry, pork or beef. In May 2019, the United Nations corroborated these findings with the release of its assessment on the health of global marine ecosystems, showing that a third of fish stocks are fished at unsustainable levels.
Essentially, wild species are harvested faster than they can reproduce. At the same time, the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations has indicated that global fish consumption will rise to nearly 152 million tons in 2030, a 27 percent increase from 2010. Therefore, we turn to aquaculture to help alleviate those pressures, allow habitats to be restored, and endangered populations to rebuild.
Aquaculture, or fish farming, is the breeding, rearing, and harvesting of animals and plants in all types of water environments. It is essential for meeting increasing global demand for fish while protecting our wild fisheries and our oceans and is one of the most resource-efficient ways to produce protein.