This report covers South Africa’s fishing and fish farming sector, including recent developments, as well as factors influencing the success of the sector. A wide spectrum of notable players in the fishing industry are also profiled, including Oceana Group, Irvin & Johnson Ltd (I&J), Sea Harvest, Pioneer Fishing, Premier Fishing, FoodCorp and Viking. Fish hatcheries and fish farms are also profiled and these include Abagold Ltd, Blue-Green Aquaculture (Pty) Ltd, Blue Ocean Mussels (Pty) Ltd and West Coast Abalone.
Ocean and Coastal Fishing and Fish Farming
South Africa’s fishing and fish farming industry contributes about 0.5% to the country’s GDP, with the marine commercial fishing industry, valued at approximately R6bn annually. The sector continues to be threatened by overfishing and poaching and the World Wildlife Fund (WWF) estimates that about 70% of South Africa’s commercial fish species is considered collapsed. The country’s fisheries sector is also conservatively losing over R4bn annually due to poaching with about 3,000 tons of fish being poached. Demand for South African fish in well-established international markets remains steady and declining wild fish stocks continues to fuel growth of the aquaculture/fish farming sector. In response, the South African government has outlined aquaculture as an area for development in the Provincial Industrial Development Strategy and aims to grow the sector’s revenue from R0.67bn to R3bn.
South Africa’s fishing industry, which is over a 100 years old, is globally recognised for its sustainable approach and can only continue to sustain the country if fish stocks are properly managed and are not destroyed by negative practices, which include the increasing threat of seabed mining in South Africa's EEZ, syndicated crime, over-exploitation of high-value species, corruption and poor compliance levels.