Seabass and Seabream Farmed in the Mediterranean: swimming against the tide of market orientation



Wagner B & Young J (2009) Seabass and Seabream Farmed in the Mediterranean: swimming against the tide of market orientation. Supply Chain Management, 14 (6), pp. 435-446.

Purpose: This paper investigates how small and medium sized aquaculture producers in the Mediterranean might move from traditional high volume output systems to become more market oriented. Design/ methodology/approach: The quantitative methodology was devised to assess production trends and potential of seabass and seabream farmed off most of the countries bordering the Mediterranean. In addition to markets adjacent to the Mediterranean producers, those in Northern Europe are also included because of the opportunities for market expansion and product diversification. Findings: It is concluded that greatest scope for industry gain lies in supply channel members being more market orientated to meet the dynamic and varied demands of consumers. The historic but still predominant one-size fits all philosophy and business approach to fish farming is outdated and demands radical revision to realise potential added-value of the industry. This is all the more important as consumers, pressure groups and governments become more aware of the political, economic and environmental impact of food miles and wider sustainable production issues, encouraging many international food markets to move away from an emphasis upon cheap food. Practical Implications: The study has practical implications for EU aquaculture policy and SME development to ensure more sustainable production and to promote positive benefits in often peripheral and fragile rural economies where alternative options are commonly rare and/ or conflicting. Originality/value: The research highlights the challenges of a sector with spatially disparate points of production and consumption coupled with a highly perishable product critically dependent upon efficient distribution whilst facing emergent environmental concerns over sustainable food production systems.

supply chain management; marketing orientation; aquaculture; Small and Medium sized Enterprises (SMEs); Aquaculture industry; Seafood Marketing; Seafood industry

Supply Chain Management: Volume 14, Issue 6

Publication date31/12/2009

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Professor Jimmy Young

Professor Jimmy Young

Emeritus Professor, Marketing & Retail