Nereus in the News – Friday, December 9

A Nereus Program study published last Friday in PLOS ONE found that Coastal Indigenous peoples consume 15 times more seafood per capita than non-Indigenous people in the same country.

The study was covered in the Washington Post article “Indigenous peoples of the world’s coastlines are losing their fisheries — and their way of life“.

Lead investigator Yoshitaka Ota, policy director for the Nereus Program, created a database to help determine how much of the global catch is consumed where coastal indigenous people live. They discovered that coastal indigenous populations took 165 pounds per person as opposed to the 44 pounds per person consumed in the rest of the world.

“A lot of communities are very similar, their food and cultural practices. What do they do if the fish are gone?” said lead author Andrés Cisneros-Montemayor, Nereus Program Manager and Research Associate. “We are at risk of losing human cultures that have been around for thousands of years, which makes this issue much more than environmental.”

This study was also featured in:
CBC News: “Coastal Indigenous people eat 15 times more seafood than non-Indigenous, study reveals
Metro News: “Coastal indigenous communities eat 15 times more seafood than non-indigenous people

Local reef fish on sale after a night of fishing at Nukualofa, Tonga. Image by Colette Wabnitz.