For the first time, the world is eating more fish from farms than from the open sea, spurring billions of euro of takeovers as one of the largest food companies seeks to capitalise on rising demand.
The latest buyer to enter the fray is Cargill, the world’s biggest grain trader and a meat supplier, which said it has agreed to acquire Norwegian salmon-feed business Ewos Holding for €1.36bn.
Fish consumption is growing at a faster pace than beef, pork and poultry, driven by an expanding, increasingly prosperous global population that recognizes the health benefits of eating seafood.
Demand is forecast by UN to outstrip supply in coming years.
Wild fish aren’t going to fill the gap, and that leaves farming in lakes and coastal waters — also known as aquaculture — to make up the shortfall.
“We can expect that large companies active in commodities, animal proteins and life sciences will be considering this industry and how they can play a role in the growth of what some call the Blue Revolution, the growth of marine farming of food and feed,” Gorjan Nikolik, a Rabobank International seafood-industry analyst, said.
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