China ranks #1 in catch and consumption of world’s fish

China tops the list of nations for overfishing and fish consumption

According to research conducted by the University of British Columbia in collaboration with the National Geographic Society and The Pew Charitable Trusts, China tops the list of countries in the world for annual tonnage of fish caught and consumed.

The ranking lists the top 20 countries with the greatest impact on ocean ecosystems through the catch and consumption of fish. The SeafoodPrint study, led by Daniel Pauly of the University of British Columbia and National Geographic Ocean Fellow Enric Sala, provided the data for the study. The full study has not yet been released.

China’s ranking comes from its enormous population. Japan’s ranking, who also ranks in the top three, is based on consumption of fish rather than its catch. The “Top 20” lists of fish catch and consumption are published in the National Geographic’s magazine October issue 

It’s important to note that much of the world’s catch is purchased by wealthier nations. Poorer countries simply can’t afford to bid for the high-value species. These same countries also lose out when their governments establish trade or fishing agreements with wealthier nations which results in local fish being sold abroad, denied to those locals who are most in need and have the greater right to claim them.

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