“Blue revolution” in nutrition: We will eat double fish and seafood by 2050

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Turn to fish, seafood, Seaweed and other food coming from aquatic ecosystems humanity will do by 2050, according to scientists. This will have a positive impact on both the human health due to better nutrition, as well as in environment, since the production of food of animal origin is responsible for a much higher percentage of “greenhouse gases”, which worsen the climate change.

The so-called “Blue food revolution” can make a significant contribution to tackling malnutrition internationally, as well as reducing the environmental “footprint” of the global food system. Indicatively, mussel farms and shellfish farms produce the fewest “greenhouse gases” of all foods.

Improvements in aquaculture, lower prices for “blue” food and changes in consumer preferences, which are gradually moving away from livestock meat, are expected to steadily increase demand for seafood and other water foods. This trend, among other things, reports the Athenian News Agency, is expected to have a positive impact on human nutrition in terms of health.

According to researchers, some “Blue” foods are more nutritious than meat such as beef, lamb, pork or poultry, in terms of various ingredients (omega-3, vitamins A and B12, calcium, iodine, iron, zinc, etc.). For example, trout have about 19 times more omega-3 fatty acids than chicken, while shellfish and mussels have 76 times more vitamin B-12 and five times more iron. Scientists point out that the nutritional benefit of increased consumption of water-based foods is greater for women than for men.

Experts in this field, who made five relevant publications in the journals “Nature”, “Nature Food” and “Nature Communications”, in the framework of the large international scientific consortium “Blue Food Assessment” (BFA) with participation of 100 scientists from 25 research institutes and universities, predict that Global consumption of these foods will increase from 80 million tonnes to almost 155 million tonnes within the next three decades, as long as production meets demand and prices for fish and other seafood will not rise.

From Asia the largest share of growing demand for seafood

THE China is expected to continue to be the largest consumer of fish in the world, while in general the largest share of the increase in demand for seafood will come from Asia. But there is a general global trend in favor of “blue” food even in sub-Saharan Africa.

“Efforts need to be intensified to improve the production of aquatic food so that supply can meet the clear demand we see around the world for cheap, nutritious and sustainable blue foods. “Unlike the production of farm animals such as chickens, there is still considerable room for expansion in blue food production,” said Rosamond Naylor, a professor at Stanford University in the United States.

Scientists point out that the environmental sustainability of the new trend of “blue” food consumption will depend on which species of fish are mainly eaten, as well as how they will be caught and produced in the future. However, they consider it possible that future demand will be met almost exclusively by aquaculture, which is growing rapidly, especially in Asia, and much less by fisheries expansion, which has much smaller margins.

Experts also expect an increase in imports and exports of aquaculture products, which is already very visible even in Africa, which now imports and consumes much more seafood. Scientists also report that the demand for aquatic edible plants, algae, etc. has been underestimated so far.

In total, more than 2,500 species of fish, seafood, algae, etc. are caught, collected or produced for human consumption worldwide, providing income to more than 100 million people and food to over one billion.

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