Seafood 2040 - Research

An all-sector road map of collaboration, innovation and best practice to ensure that the English seafood industry is thriving in the next 20 years.

The Seafood 2040 Strategic Framework (SF2040) is a first in presenting an all-sector road map of collaboration, innovation and best practice to ensure that the English seafood industry is a thriving business from sea to plate in the next 20 years. It is also a pragmatic plan with 25 short to long-term recommendations developed by the seafood supply chain to advance that vision. 

SF2040 is funded through European Maritime Fisheries Fund (EMFF) until February 2021 and is facilitated by Seafish. Some of the SF2040 recommendations require further funding in order to be realised. 

In 2019 and 2020, SF2040 successfully applied to EMFF for further funding to enable progress in two recommendations:

  • Recommendation 6: Review the impacts of a population shift to 2 a week seafood consumption to better quantify the substantial socio-economic impacts of improved health


  • Recommendation 16: The identification of the issues, gaps, and solutions in skills, training, recruitment and retention across England’s seafood industry

Recommendation 6

One SF2040 ambition is to encourage England’s population to consume two portions of seafood per person per week. The health benefits of seafood such as protein rich and low calorie are well documented. However, what is not clearly understood is the estimated socioeconomic value of the impact of increased seafood consumption on Government budgets, the economy, NHS, and the population. There is a lack of reliable data for evidence-based decision-making and planning and it is anticipated this research will improve that understanding. 

Through the interrogation of economic and population health data an estimated picture of the socioeconomic value and impact of increased seafood consumption on England’s economy, population health, and Government, and NHS budgets has emerged. This is a novel method therefore the study is preliminary. The research is an important first step in determining reliable estimates of potential government savings as a result of increased seafood consumption across the population. Further research is now required to validate and complete this first study, or find another method that is valid.

The project ran from June 2019 – May 2020 and the project outputs are reported in the Final Report, which can be accessed on the following link.

Recommendation 16

In this era of Brexit uncertainty and struggling workforce retention across the entire English seafood industry, the sectors need information, support and a joined-up approach to better understand labour market patterns as well as recruitment and retention issues and solutions. Detailed and comprehensive labour market intelligence for the entire seafood industry has been intermittent and inconsistent. Improved training, skills development, and career planning are additionally required to prosper.  

England needs labour market, skills development, recruitment, and retention intelligence and solutions. This research provides that information through:

  1. An assessment of the industry’s recruitment and retention needs and issues
  2. An assessment of national and international best practice in training, skills development, and workforce retention
  3. A review of the current training infrastructure to identify areas of improvement 
  4. Recommendations from net to plate based on the information and findings

The project timeframe was January - June 2020 and the output is the England’s Seafood Industry: Skills, Recruitment and Retention report, which can be accessed from the link below.