Post-harvest practices and technologies are key to reducing global aquatic harvest loss. The lives of post-harvest fisheries workers, over half of them women, are deeply affected by these technologies, but their equity and equality outcomes are poorly understood. This systematic review synthesizes evidence of post-harvest aquatic food processing technology outcomes, showing that persistent inequalities in social structure and norms disadvantage women across a range of technologies, both traditional and improved, especially regarding control over resources. We found that improved technologies bring enhanced productivity and possibly income for workers, yet contracts are often precarious due to pre-existing social inequities. Whilst power and control of resources is more unequal in factory settings, it is not necessarily equal in traditional contexts either, despite offering greater flexibility. More rigorous comparative research, including voices of diverse actors, is key to understand the impacts of different technologies on gender equality and social justice and inform policymaking.
Original languageEnglish
Article numberNATFOOD-23071044
Number of pages22
JournalNature Food
Publication statusAccepted/In press - 19 Jun 2024
EventIIFET 2024 Penang: Aquatic food systems in the blue economy - malaysia, Penang, Malaysia
Duration: 15 Jul 202419 Jul 2024


  • systematic review
  • post-harvest fisheries
  • gender equality
  • livelihoods
  • Health
  • social justice

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