Globalisation and Fisheries

Proceedings of an OECD-FAO Workshop

image of Globalisation and Fisheries
This conference proceedings highlights the key risks and opportunities that policy makers need to address relative to fisheries globalisation so that on the one hand, the opportunities that are created are not missed while, on the other, the risks are addressed appropriately. It presents a wide range of experiences and points of view from every part of the value chain of the fisheries industry, including fishers, processors, consumers, NGOs, restaurant and retail chains, as well as government and academic experts.


Identifying the Parameters With Which We Are Working in the Aquaculture Sector

Mr. Kumar explained how India is coping with the pressures of globalisation and how frameworks have been adjusted to facilitate its response. India is the world’s second largest aquaculture producer, with shrimp a major export item from aquaculture. Shrimp provides 58% of the total value and 28% of the total quantity of India’s aquaculture production. Major markets for shrimp are the EU (one third of production), USA and Japan. However, India has a large number of small farms that practise extensive farming with limited stocking densities; 90% of farmers have ponds smaller than two hectares. This means that farming is highly fragmented and traceability can be challenging and certification prohibitively expensive. Uncertainty in the international trading system has been a large problem for Indian shrimp farmers, particularly as a result of anti-dumping measures; for example the number of Indian exporters to the United States fell from 169 in 2002-03 to 77 in 2006. For Mr. Kumar other concerns include disease, lower prices on the international market, increasing cost of production, rising quality requirements, lack of insurance and financial support and exploitation by middlemen. Indian shrimp farmers also experience difficulties in international trade, including market access issues due to tariff escalation. The increased dominance of supermarkets that raise entry barriers through the use of brands creates difficulties in supply logistics and raises costs for shelf space and market promotions. Many producers are forced to pack for private labels, thereby heavily foregoing margins. Food safety issues and non-tariff barriers such as SPS measures and EU directives for residue levels also raise production costs. To help mitigate some of these costs, aquaculture is now regulated by the Coastal Aquaculture Authority Act, which includes Code of Practices for shrimp hatcheries, farms and their registration. A comprehensive database is also under preparation that will cover 150 000 farms. A programme to introduce participatory farming through the formation of Aqua Clubs is also under way. Finally, clustering in groups of farms is likely to pool resources and allow synergies and economies of scale to be realised.


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