Global Sustainable Seafood market was valued at US$ 12.71 billion in 2017 and is expected to reach US$ 18.63 billion by 2025, witnessing a CAGR of 4.97% over the forecast period (2018 – 2025), according to Sustainable Seafood Market Report, by Product Type (Bivalves and other molluscs and aquatic invertebrates, Cephalopods, Crustaceans, Flatfish, Freshwater fish, Groundfish, Salmonids, Small pelagics, Tuna and tuna-like species and Others), by Form (Chilled, Frozen, Canned and Others), and by Distribution Channel (Hypermarkets, Supermarkets, Convenience Stores, Specialty Stores, Online and Others).
Organizations such as Greenpeace, World Wildlife Fund (WWF), Sustainable Fisheries Partnership, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, Marine Stewardship Council and others have focused on creating awareness towards sustainable seafood. For instance, the Marine Stewardship Council, an international non-profit organization focuses on creating sustainable fishing practices through their fishery certification programs and labelling. Product labelling has also become an important factor in raising consumer awareness towards sustainable seafood, which is playing a key role in driving market growth. Sea food products are being displayed with different labels and certifications enabling consumers to make informed choices while buying a seafood from a retail outlet. For instance, the MSC label indicates that the seafood has been sustainably sourced without impacting the marine ecosystem.
Similarly, the Dolphin Safe label indicates that the seafood is sourced without harming the dolphins while the Global Aquaculture Alliance Label used on farmed fish indicates that less chemicals have been used with minimal impact on surrounding areas. Several companies such as Whole Foods, Iglo Group, Asda uses different kinds of labels to promote its sustainable seafood products. For instance, Iglo Group, involved in marketing frozen food, started selling products with Marine Stewardship Council’s (MSC) blue eco-label on its certified wild fish products across the European market in 2015.
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Key Trends and Analysis of the Sustainable Seafood Market:
- In terms of distribution channel, hypermarkets and supermarket segment held dominant position as the leading retail outlets in terms of value selling sustainable sea food in 2017. Some of the leading retailers stocking sustainable seafood includes Walmart, Waitrose, Lidl, Aldi, Tesco, M&S and others who have committed to 100% sustainable sourcing of seafood in the next few years. In 2017, across British retail chains, it has been estimated that around 79% of sea food range of ALDI are MSC certified, followed by Sanisburry’s with 76% and Lidl with 72%. In 2016, M&S committed to ensuring that all fishing vessels supplying to M&S to be Responsible Fishing Scheme (RFS) certified by 2021.
- Retailers such as ALDI, Walmart, Costco, Sainsbury’s, Lidl, Wholefoods, and Waitrose are some of the leading retailers who have been working in tandem with different organizations to ensure sustainable sourcing of seafood. For instance, Carrefour have been focusing on sustainable sourcing and consumption of seafood by withdrawing the sale of endangered species such as emperor, black scabbard and shark, creating provision for tackling illegal fishing and with plans to ensure half of all fish purchased through its stores are farmed using sustainable methods by 2020. Sainsbury’s was one of the leading retailers having over 226 MSC certified stocks during the first quarter of 2017 while Tesco, another leading retailer added nearly MSC certified products in 2016. Owing to increasing trend of sustainable seafood products, several private label players have introduced sustainable seafood, in turn fueling the growth of the market. For instance, in 2015, Lidl introduced the frozen lobster at around US$ 6.5 through sustainable sourcing. Similarly, Carrefour also introduced private label tuna products in 2015, in line fulfilling the requirement for necessary sustainable compliances.
Key Takeaways of the Market:
- According to study, Europe holds leading position in market for sustainable seafood, owing to increasing demand for seafood in the region. Some of the key leading markets for seafood in Europe are UK, France, Italy, Germany and Spain. According to the EU, in 2016, the household expenditure on fisheries and aquaculture products reached over US$ 64 billion, an increase of over 1.5% than the previous year, with countries such as Spain, Italy, France and Germany witnessing growth of 3%, 1.4%, 2.3% and 2.7% respectively. With consumers increasing gaining awareness, retailers especially in Northern and Western Europe are stocking more of sustainable sea food. As a result, many retailers operating across the European market have partnered with the MSC or Friend of the Sea (FOS) or Sustainable Fisheries Partnership (SFP) for certifications. For instance, in 2016, 14 fisheries were FOS certified while 16 tuna fisheries are MSC certified.
- Although the penetration rate of sustainable sea food is low in the APAC region, high production of fish and aquaculture in this region is expected to play a major role in the growth of the market. According to EU, in 2015, the total production of fishery and aquaculture products in the Asia region reached 149 million tons and accounted for 74% of the global market. Economies such as China, India, Indonesia and Japan remains the primary markets with high growth opportunities whereby in 2015, China was the key leading producer of fishery products globally and represented around 53% of the market. However, factors such as lack of awareness along with lack of stringent forms related to overfishing stands to be one of the major roadblocks being faced in the region. According to Ministry of China, around 13.28 million tones of fish were caught from the country’s coastal ground, which is far more than the permissible limit of eight to nine million tones. Hence, proper regulations are required to ensure sustainability of the marine ecosystem. In China, high consumption of sea food along with factors such as high population, changing consumer preferences such as focus on quality of food and health is further expected to drive the market growth. As a result, economies such as China are now focusing on increasing awareness and plans to introduce stringent laws, which are expected to drive growth of sustainable seafood market. In 2017, the government of China planned to reduce China’s fishing policy by 15% by 2020, with 20,000 lesser vessels along with restricting the catch to 10 million tones. Furthermore, Marine Stewardship Council (MSC) holds the Sea Food Week annually to increase awareness in the country. Similar initiative was launched by the organization in Australia in 2018, supported by brands such as Ikea, Coles and John West. Furthermore, India contributed around 3% of the global production of fishery and aquaculture products in 2015, according to EU stands to be another key market with high opportunities of growth for sustainable seafood market. In 2017, the MSC awarded funding of around US$ 58000 to WWF India for promoting sustainable fishery practices in the country with the support of the Central Marine Fisheries Research Institute.
- Key manufacturers operating in the global sustainable seafood market include, M.F. Foley Company, Inc., Zoneco Group Co., Ltd, Walker Seafoods, Nippon Suisan Kaisha, Ltd, Thai Union Group, Maruha Nichiro Corporation, Austral Fisheries, Pacific Andes Group, Marine Harvest ASA, AgriMarine Holdings, Kyokuyo Suisan Co., Ltd., Mitsubishi Corporation, and others.