If you ever make it to the Moroccan Atlantic coast city of Essaouira, I suggest you set aside an hour or so in the very early afternoon to visit its fishing port. It’s a flurry of activity, with fisherman packing and storing their morning catch, negotiating prices and purchases and mending their nets. Or tidying their boats, like in today’s Pic du Jour, the blog’s 512th straight. If you’re lucky, a camera shy fisherman might even fling a sardine at you.
This is part of a 20-image gallery I published last November of my September 2014 visit to what was, as recently as 1950, Morocco’s most important port for sardine fishing. These day it’s still largest canned sardine exporter in the world and the leading supplier to Europe, with some 600,000 tons processed annually.
With annual revenues of about US$1 billion (EUR 800 million), the Moroccan fishing industry is generally considered to be the largest in Africa and remains the chief foreign exchange earner in the country, accounting for 56 percent of agricultural exports and 16 percent of total exports.