Read the report ‘Perfect Storm’ here.
The future importance of seafood as a food source for the ever-growing global population is undisputed yet Japan’s place in that market is now under serious pressure. Japan’s seafood industry is the leader in the global listed equity wild-catch fishing market and is home to 23 of the top 100 listed companies worldwide, with revenues of $37 billion from global seafood sales in 2017.
Wild-catch seafood production in Japan has been in serious long-term decline since 1985 where production reached 12.8 million tonnes and has since decreased to 3.3 million tonnes of wildcatch in 2017. Production declines are projected to continue to fall to 2025. Overfishing poses serious financial and reputational risks, not just to Japanese wild-catch companies, but to the investors and credit lenders who finance them. Currently they have limited ability to tell whether the companies they finance are sourcing wild-catch fish sustainably or not.
Critical for investors is to require companies to prove they are fishing within maximum sustainable yield thresholds, conduct due diligence and monitoring, mandate full traceability and transparency, establish sustainability policies and adopt sustainable investment and lending principles.