China confirms 2016 output, priorities for 2017

Published on
January 19, 2017

China scored a three percent increase in its seafood output in 2016, the country’s Agricultural Ministry has announced, confirming a higher figure than had been speculated in earlier reports but nonetheless a slower rate of growth than the previous year.

Output last year totaled 69 million tons, up 3.8 percent year-on-year from China’s seafood output in 2015, which totaled 66.9 million tons, according to figures published at a National Fisheries gathering hosted by the ministry, which closed over the weekend. 

Priorities for its seafood production sector were also outlined during the meeting by the top fisheries official, Yu Kangzhen. A vice minister for agriculture, Yu outlined his “six-point plan” for the year ahead.

Producers have to prioritize “ecological production… and take the green road of sustainable development,” Yu said. He also pointed to a “red-line consciousness” – a reference to protection of minimum quantities of fish in its territorial seas.

Interestingly for those seeking to sell seafood to Chinese buyers, Yu also wants the country to increase the volume and diversity of its seafood sourcing. He pointed to the need for “adaptability to changes in demand” – echoing previous references by Yu in 2016 to increasing China’s global sourcing of seafood in order to secure replacement species for over-fished local favorites while also limiting price inflation in Chinese seafood markets.

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