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A "feminist perspective" in fisheries builds on the fact that women of fishing communities take on multidimensional roles that straddle both production and reproduction...


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Issue No:54
  • :May
  • :2017
  • :English

The Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), which replaced the Millennium Development Goals, set new targets for sustainable development by the year 2030. Among the SDGs, SDG 14, which specifically calls for the sustainable use of marine resources, is the focus of the upcoming United Nations Ocean Conference, scheduled to take place in New York from 5 to 9 June 2017. This conference is extremely relevant for the fisheries sector, given the large number of powerful stakeholders currently seeking control over marine and fisheries resources. In the context, it is important to emphasise that there are several factors that are crucial in determining the sustainable development of these resources. A major factor is the role of women in fisheries.

Studies of small-scale fisheries across the globe show how women contribute to the sustainability of the fisheries sector. They also show that where women have greater agency, they contribute to improving value addition and productivity in the sector. In the context, SDG 5 that emphasizes gender equality and empowerment of women and children is very important, not only for equity and for the rights of women, but also from the perspective of sustainable economic growth in small-scale fisheries.


Managing Mercado del Mar

Women play a key role in the running of Mercado del Mar, one of Mexico’s largest fish markets

By Carmen Pedroza-Gutiérrez (pedrozacarmen@yahoo.com), Universidad Nacional Autónoma de México (UNAM), Mexico

Women’s participation in post-harvest activities in Mexico dates back to pre-Hispanic times when women engaged in salting, drying and selling fish in rural markets. Currently, while women are involved in all activities along the fish value chain, their roles are mainly in post-harvest and administrative activities. Most studies talk about women’s work in low payment employments but not in influential positions. Women’s participation in the fishing industry as business leaders is not common.

The Mercado del Mar is the largest wholesale fish market in Mexico, after la Central de Pescados y Mariscos La Nueva Viga in Mexico City. The market is located in Zapopan, a suburb of the city of Guadalajara, which is the second largest city in the country with around 4.5 million inhabitants. The creation of the fish market corresponds to the new design of suburban commerce, where shopping