Category Archives: Senegal

Contributions by women in the fisheries of five major fishing countries

Women shrimp traders in Mazatlan, Mexico. Photo: Maria Cruz-Torres

A recent paper published in Coastal Management (Contributions by Women to Fisheries Economies: Insights from Five Maritime Countries) investigates the contribution by women to fisheries economies in Mexico, Peru, Senegal, South Africa, and Vietnam.

Through an exhaustive review of data and literature on women and fisheries, the authors of this paper, Sarah Harper, Charlotte Grubb, Margot Stiles, and Rashid Sumaila, take stock of what is known about women in the fisheries sector of these five countries. From the available information, women appear to make substantial contributions to the fisheries sector and related economy; however, these contributions are not always visible in an economic accounting or policy sense. For example, indirect participation in all five countries was mainly measured by statistics for processing and retail activities, as little information was available for the many other activities of women that support fishing households, e.g., book keeping, gear repairs, and provisioning for fishing trips.

The paper highlights major gaps in the availability of sex-disaggregated data on participation in fishing activities through the fish value chain and suggests the need for improved national-level data collection for the development of gender-sensitive fisheries policies and programs.

Download the paper : link (Institutional access may be required; lead author’s e-mail: sjmharper@gmail.com )

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FAO report highlights gender imbalance in fish industry

Worker in Marz, Iceland, factory, the only women created and led seafood exporting country in Iceland. Photo: Grapevine magazine, Iceland 2 Jan 2014.

Worker in Marz, Iceland, factory, the only women created and led seafood exporting country in Iceland. Photo: Grapevine magazine, Iceland 2 Jan 2014.

The Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO), through its GLOBEFISH unit on international fish trade, recently released a report – “The Role of Women in the Seafood Industry” – that highlighted the contributions and constraints on women through all levels and scales of the fish industry. The report, written by Marie-Christine Monfort, is a welcome addition to the global analysis of women in the industry and particularly focuses its attention on “the
widespread lack of consideration for their role and work in the seafood industry is, in many respects, disadvantageous to them and ultimately bars them from participating fully and equitably in the industry.” It is aimed to raise awareness in business leaders and policy makers.

In its general analysis and conclusions, much of what the report says will not be news to readers of this website, but the author makes her points well and strongly, for example in tables such as that below on “where are the women.”where are the women

Marie Christine Monfort at GAF5, Lucknow.

Marie Christine Monfort at GAF5, Lucknow.

In particular, the author, herself successful in the seafood industry, takes a private sector industry view that distinguishes it from the studies and reports of academics and government experts, with a strong focus on what is happening in companies of all sizes and in their workforces and management. She gives board and management numbers and employee number by gender for the top companies, and lists companies headed by women.

A unique feature comes in the second part of the report, namely the 6 case studies of Croatia, Egypt, France, Iceland, India and Senegal. Each country is analysed for the knowledge about women’s participation in the seafood industry, awareness of gender inequalities and corrective measures in the seafood industry. The picture is not encouraging, with the possible exception of Iceland where knowledge and awareness are high, but corrective measures to help women still largely lacking, although now the women have created their own supportive network.

The report can be downloaded from FAO: click here.

See also Marie-Christine Monfort’s presentation at GAF5.

The Joys and Pains of Managing a Maturing Website

Busy beach landing for Hann Fish Market, Dakar, Senegal, April 2013. Women and men take over the fish handling and processing from the all-male captains and crews of the spectacular wooden fishing canoes.

Busy early morning beach landing for Hann Fish Market, Dakar, Senegal, April 2013. Onshore, women and men take over the fish handling and processing from the all-male captains and crews of the spectacular wooden fishing canoes.

By Meryl Williams

This website, Genderaquafish.org, will be 3 years old next month. Recently, as I undertook some long overdue maintenance, I reflected on the joys and pains of a maturing website.

First the joys! Thanks to a steady feed of good and relevant material on women/gender in aquaculture and fisheries, and supporting material from other themes and sectors, the information content of our website is steadily building up. If you use the excellent WordPress search function (right-hand top on the home page), or the category links down on the right of the home page, you can readily find the posts and pages you seek.

Also, more of our interested readers are sending in links, their own stories and news of new events and opportunities, thus further enriching the site.

Now for some of the pain! After 3 years of growth and my laid-back attitude to maintenance, I started to find that “link-rot” had well and truly set in.  Some of the web-sites our posts referred to had closed down, e.g., after a conference was well and truly finished, others had redesigned and moved the web addresses of precious documents, etc. So, we went through the tedious and overdue task of finding the broken links (fortunately good programs will do all the laborious searching, link by link, across all the pages) and then doing something about them.

Now, all this is the long way of saying, if you ever find a link on this site that does not work properly, please contact me and I will try to ensure it is fixed. Oh, and we will be doing regular maintenance of the links in future, as well as looking at better ways to structure what we already have.

All your suggestions are welcome!

CONTACT: meryljwilliams@gmail.com

Yemaya 40 focuses on GAF outcomes from Rio+20

The latest issue of “Yemaya”, the gender and fisheries newsletter of the International Collective in Support of Fishworkers, has just been released, containing materials on global initiatives (Rio+20, FAO’s Committee on

Clan elder, Magesa Lubumbika from Lugata village (Kome Island) performing fishing rituals in honour of his grandson. Photo: Modesta Medard, in Yemaya 40 p. 7.

Fisheries work and CEDAW), and special reports on gender dimensions of fisheries in Africa (Gambia, Senegal, Tanzania), and profiles of leaders from Indonesia and Brazil. 

Download articles or the whole issue at Yemaya 40

  • Rio+20 – Is this the Future We Want? Analysis, Online Resources and Yemaya Mama looks for sustainable development in Rio!
  • Gambia: Building Capacity, Managing Change
  • Profile: Never Say Die – Masnu’ah, women’s group leader in Indonesia
  • Loss of Inheritance: consequences of changes in Lake Victoria fisheries, Tanzania
  • CEDAW turns 30!
  • Promoting Gender Equity – summaries of CSO proposals as part of FAO small-scale fisheries processes
  •  Brazil fisherwomen: Naina Pierri interviews Cleonice Silva Nascimento
  • Review: “An Evaluation of the Roles of Women in Fishing Communities of Dakar, the La Petite Côte, and Sine Saloum,” Senegal