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Kerala: Fish production falls in Kerala, sardine catch lowest in 20 years July 02,2020   |  Source: The New Indian Express

Kerala’s fish production declined by 15.4 per cent to touch 5.44 lakh tonnes in 2019, from 6.43 lakh tonnes in 2018, raising concerns about depleting marine resources. Sharp decline in the catch of oil sardine and Indian mackerel, the two major resources of the state, was the major factor behind the decline. The landing of oil sardine, the state’s staple fish, touched a two-decade low of 44,320 tonnes in 2019.

The decline has been attributed to the warming of Arabian Sea due to the El Nino South Oscillation effect. The species’ catch in Kerala had recorded an all-time high of 3.9 lakh tonnes in 2012 but dropped to 45,958 tonnes in 2016. It climbed to 1.27 lakh tonnes in 2017, before dropping to 77,093 tonnes in 2018. As per the data released by Central Marine Fisheries Research Institute (CMFRI) on Tuesday, India’s fish landings stood at 35.6 lakh tonnes against 34.9 lakh tonnes in 2018, a marginal increase of 2.1 per cent. Tamil Nadu topped with 7.75 lakh tonnes, replacing Gujarat which slipped to second place with 7.49 lakh tonnes.

The CMFRI data also indicated a worrying trend of a sharp increase in stocks of commercially unimportant fish species. The redtoothed trigger fish, which has little demand in domestic market and is mostly caught for use in feed mills,

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Years in Support of Small Scale Fishworkers (1986 - 2018)