Food from the Oceans

Food from the Oceans


About the ‘Food from the Oceans’ project

The Group of Chief Scientific Advisors asked SAPEA to produce an Evidence Review Report on the following question:



How can more food and biomass be obtained from the oceans in a way that does not deprive future generations of their benefits?







The purpose of this Evidence Review Report was to inform the Group of Chief Scientific Advisors‘ Opinion on the topic, which was requested by the European Commissioner for Environment, Maritime Affairs and Fisheries 2014-2019, Karmenu Vella.


AE Cardiff’s role in ‘Food from the Oceans’

Food from the Oceans was the first evidence review delivered by the SAPEA Consortium and was led by Academia Europaea, with responsibility for management and delivery of the work given to the Cardiff Hub.

The Hub was responsible for the coordination of the two international working groups, the formal peer review, an expert workshop and public engagement events, as well as the preparation of the report for publication.


Publication of the Evidence Review Report

The Food from the Oceans Evidence Review Report was published in November 2017, together with the Scientific Opinion produced by the Group of Chief Scientific Advisors.


The SAPEA evidence review report is available here. The SAM Group of Chief Scientific Advisors Opinion is available here.


The Report was handed over on 29th November 2017 in Brussels. Two European Commissioners, Karmenu Vella (Environment, Maritime Affairs and Fisheries) and Carlos Moedas (Research, Science and Innovation) were present.

Handover to European Commissioners, Brussels, November 2017
Handover to European Commissioners, Brussels, November 2017


Key findings of the Report

The Report warns that in our extraction of food from the oceans, ‘business as usual’ is not sustainable from social, economic and environmental viewpoints. The Report suggests a number of options, which inform the recommendations of the Group of Chief Scientific Advisors’ Opinion. It states that the only way to obtain significantly more food and biomass sustainably from the ocean is to harvest seafood that on average is from a lower trophic level (lower in the food chain) than we currently harvest.


Public Engagement

Following the publication of the reports, SAPEA and the SAM Unit jointly produced an infographics-based set of publicity materials, in partnership with the Cardiff-based agency science made simple. A webpage was set up to accompany the leaflet with relevant information on the topic and different downloads, such as a colouring sheet, a poster and the reports. All public event activity is listed on the SAPEA website.

Latest news about ‘Food from the Oceans’

For latest news about Food from the Oceans, click here.


More about our SAPEA work

Read more about the Hub’s work on SAPEA here.