Overfishing is jeopardising a global tuna industry worth more than $42bn (£29bn), according to the first assessment of its kind. A report produced by the Pew Charitable Trusts has highlighted the significant revenues that fishermen, processors and retailers are generating from severely depleted species of tuna.
Taken together, the seven most commercially important tuna species – skipjack, albacore, bigeye, yellowfin, atlantic bluefin, Pacific bluefin and southern bluefin – generated $12bn (£8bn) for fishermen in 2014, while the full value, including the total amount paid by the final consumer at supermarkets and restaurants around the world, was estimated to be $42bn (£29bn).
“It’s no secret that tuna are big business,” said Amanda Nickson, Pew’s director of global tuna conservation. “Now, for the first time, we’re able to put an actual price on what’s at stake in the fight for the conservation and sustainable management of these commercially and ecologically important fish.”