While volume is stable, the value of French seafood has been rising steadily.
So the big issue for the sector is to upgrade and modernize its equipment in order to put its products in the limelight and support sustainable fishing.
“Fish-farming has been innovating with water-recycling systems that make it possible to breed young fish with very small amounts of water“
The sector is also working hard on the composition of fish feed, in order to depend less and less on “forage fish” that aren’t eaten by consumers, a.k.a. flour-mill fishing.
Another change of direction: genomic research, which aims to guide selection in order to have more efficient farmed varieties without resorting to genetic modification. One of the key stakes in in genomic selection is to reduce oyster-mortality rates, by searching for genetic markers related to their diseases (viral, bacterial or parasitic). Shellfish farming made a spectacular recovery after oyster and mussel colonies were decimated by devastating epidemics in recent years. But it is flourishing once again, and now exports the lion’s share of its production, which is appreciated worldwide.
Thanks to these new techniques, the French fishery sector is on its feet again, ready to compete internationally for the world’s growing demand for seafood.