Fish production in India has increased more than tenfold since its independence in 1947. According to the Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) of the United Nations, fish output in India doubled between 1990 and 2010. India has 8,118 kilometers of marine coastline, 3,827 fishing villages, and 1,914 traditional fish landing centers.
India's fresh water resources consist of 195,210 kilometers of rivers and canals, 2.9 million hectares of minor and major reservoirs, 2.4 million hectares of ponds and lakes, and about 0.8 million hectares of flood plain wetlands and water bodies. As of 2010, the marine and freshwater resources offered a combined sustainable catch fishing potential of over 4 million metric tonnes of fish.
In addition, India's water and natural resources offer a tenfold growth potential in aquaculture (farm fishing) from 2010 harvest levels of 3.9 million metric tonnes of fish, if India were to adopt fishing knowledge, regulatory reforms, and sustainability policies adopted by China over the last two decades.
The marine fish harvested in India consist of about 65 commercially important species/groups. Pelagic and midwater species contributed about 52% of the total marine fish in 2004.