The world’s oceans, seas and coastal areas are the planet’s largest ecosystems and a vital protein source for millions of people.
850 million people worldwide depend on coral reefs for food and livelihoods.
Protecting some of the world’s most threatened marine habitats and resources will help ensure that our oceans can continue to sustain us for generations to come.
However, current practices in wild-capture fisheries have led to widespread habitat loss and 90% of global fish stocks being either over-exploited or fished to capacity.
In aquaculture, problems include excessive chemical and antibiotic use, as well as poor animal husbandry and waste management practices.
These issues have led to poor and rapidly deteriorating conditions in surrounding marine ecosystems and the emergence of global food safety concerns.
Sustainable production and consumption of seafood is critical to tackle this problem, prevent the collapse of marine ecosystems and secure Singapore’s seafood supply.
Ocean stewardship and protection is one of the key pillars in WWF’s conservation strategy. Over the past few years, WWF has been actively involved in many key regional and local initiatives that support sustainable seafood production and protect critical habitats.
Sharks play an integral ecological role in marine ecosystems by maintaining the delicate balance in marine food webs. Despite this, many shark species are now facing extinction due to global demand for shark products. Unfortunately, Singapore plays a big part in contributing to this as one of the major global traders for shark fin (see here). To tackle this issue, WWF has been actively campaigning against consumption of shark fin in Singapore. Read here to find out more about the campaign and ways to contribute.
The domestic demand for shark’s fin has also created a market for fins in the surrounding countries such as Indonesia and Malaysia. Sharks caught as bycatch in these countries are regularly exported to/landed in Singapore and finned to meet this demand. In South Sorong and Bintuni Bay of West Papua, however, shark bycatch is especially concerning as these places serve as a pupping ground and nursery for some critically endangered species such as the Scalloped Hammerhead. WWF has been working since 2019 to investigate the extent of bycatch for fisheries in this region in order to identify the critical shark habitats for protection.
Marine Protected Areas (MPAs) are essential tools to protect critical habitats that drive key ecological functions within ocean ecosystems. Beyond preserving biodiversity, MPAs also safeguard the livelihoods of coastal communities and seafood supply chains that depend on these oceanic ecosystem services.
In Northeastern Palawan, WWF is working in collaboration with governments, civil society, academic institutions and local communities at six municipalities to sustainably manage over one million hectares of marine protected areas since 2016. In 2020, WWF has extended its commitment to the project, starting Phase 2 of our conservation work in the area. To read more about this project and its challenges, do check out WWF’s blog here and here.
For more information on the benefits of MPAs and its role in a Blue Economy, check out our website here or read WWF’s 2015 report on MPAs here.
Recognising that Singapore has a key role to play in sustainable seafood, WWF-Singapore entered a landmark partnership with Marina Bay Sands (MBS) in 2017 that have since made huge local and regional impacts in ocean conservation. As part of the partnership, MBS supports projects to improve fishery and aquaculture farming practices in the region and increase responsible seafood supplies in the market. Read more here for details on some of the initiatives that have resulted from this collaboration.
WWF recognises the importance of using a science-based approach to engage and empower businesses across Singapore’s seafood industry to help them adopt responsible seafood sourcing practices, and improve overall industry standards.
If you are a hotel, restaurant, or seafood supplier in Singapore, and are interested in responsible seafood, contact us at email@example.com for more information.
With the depletion of global fish stocks, fish farming—aquaculture—will increasingly be the means to meet the growing population’s demand for seafood. In fact, aquaculture already yields more seafood than the world’s fisheries.
Agricultural production systems, including aquaculture, by their nature, will have impacts on the environment in order to produce food for humans. However, a responsible aquaculture farm has reduced and controlled impacts on the surrounding environment and it efficiently utilizes resource inputs like feed ingredients, water, and energy. Responsible fish farming operations are managed in ways that protect wildlife, workers, communities and the environment in which they all live.
WWF recommends the Aquaculture Stewardship Council standard (ASC) as the most credible, robust certification for farmed seafood. In order to increase availability and impact from responsible aquaculture operations, WWF supports aquaculture improvement projects and other efforts that enable farms to improve their performance and achieve the ASC standard. In order to achieve this, we are working with some of the world’s largest aquaculture farms, including marine finfish farms in Malaysia.
If you are an aquaculture farm in Singapore, and are interested in responsible aquaculture production, contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org for more information.