According to the FAO (Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations), 93.8 million tonnes of fish were caught in 2005. Since the mid 1980s, the figures have been oscillating around 90 million tonnes: 95 in 2004, 90.5 in 2003, and 93.3 in 2002. Driven by demand, 75% of the fishing industry exploits resources to their limits, or beyond the capacity of marine ecosystems to regenerate. Maintaining such high levels of exploitation has paid a price of diversification for other species, like shrimp and cephalopods (squid, cuttlefish and octopus etc.).
Of the 3.5 million fishing boats in the world, 1% provides 50% of the world’s catch. Nearly 400 million people live off the fishing industry (including aquaculture) directly or indirectly (catching, processing, preparing, and selling), and of the 38 million who were employed in the processing industry in 2002, 87% were in Asia. 97% of fishermen are from developing nations. If fis...