Amazon Fish for Food

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Peces para la Vida

Improving food security for vulnerable people in Bolivia

Amazon Fish for Food aims to improve food security in Bolivia’s Amazon through better-managed fisheries and small-scale aquaculture.

The objective of the project was to contribute to food security in Bolivia by strengthening the fish value chains, in partnership between actors and institutions. During its first phase of activities (2011-2014), the project conducted numerous studies of the fisheries and aquaculture sectors to analyze and improve the supply chain, strengthening the fish value chains, in partnership between actors and institutions.

In 2015, Peces para la Vida entered its second operational phase, forming new alliances and consolidating its results in order to replicate and expand the positive experience identified in the first phase.

Phase I (2011-2014)

Bolivia, in the heart of South America, contains some of the world’s greatest biodiversity and physically and culturally contrasting environments. It is also considered among the continent’s poorest countries.

With 60% of the country’s landmass located in the Amazon Basin, fish are a cornerstone of food security for thousands of rural Bolivian families. While making use of an incredible diversity of species, small scale commercial and subsistence fisheries in the region are also in remarkable transition, driven by land reform, increased access, increasing demand, and expanding commercial fisheries, largely focused on an introduced species, paiche (Arapaima gigas).

World Fisheries Trust, in partnership with the Asociacion Faunagua and Asociacion Aqua Sustentable, and with the collaboration of local fisheries associations, indigenous groups, universities and government, carried out research to establish a baseline on the fisheries and their contributions to food security and livelihoods in the region. We also implemented training and development through an integrated social strategy to address bottlenecks in the value chains, contribute to improved fisheries governance, food security, the equitable distribution of benefits, and community reslience.

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Phase II (2015-2018)



  • Optimize sustainable management practices of Paiche (Arapaima gigas) and replicate them in indigenous communities.
  • Improve and disseminate fish marketing strategies, improving fish quality, to increase income and household nutrition.
  • Develop and provide financial support mechanisms to expand small-scale entrepreneurship in the fisheries and aquaculture sectors.
  • Increase livelihoods through small-scale family farming, focusing on the leadership of women, environmental sustainability and social responsibility.
  • Contribute to building a favourable environment for the governance of fisheries and aquaculture in Bolivia.
  • Contribute to understanding of concepts and practices to replicate successful experiences on a larger scale.

In partnership with FAUNAGUA and AGUA SUSTENTABLE.

Additional collaborators include the Universidad Mayor de San Simón (UMSS) (Bolivia) and the University of British Columbia-UBC-(Canada). The project is implemented through agreements with CIDOB (Confederation of Indigenous Peoples of Bolivia) and FEUPECOPINAB (United Federation of Fishermen, Fish Sellers, and Aquaculturalists of Bolivia’s Northern Amazon). With support from the Canadian International Food Security Research Fund created by the International Development Research Centre (IDRC) and the Canadian International Agency (CIDA)