Global Aquarium Fish Market Expected to Top £7 Billion by 2028

With millions of fans, aquarium keeping is one of the most popular hobbies in the world. That’s according to a recent report carried out by market research and consulting company KBV Research.

Europe as a whole is currently the largest market for pet fish, contributing to an industry that’s anticipated to be worth over £7 billion annually before the end of the decade. Freshwater aquariums remain the most popular, accounting for over 90% of fish species currently traded.

At the same time, saltwater tanks continue to win legions of new fans every year. Right now, reef aquariums—saltwater tanks containing corals and other invertebrates in addition to fish—represent one of the fastest-growing trends in the hobby. Across the board, the continued draw of fishkeeping looks set to fuel a compound annual growth rate of 8% between today and 2028.

COVID-19 impact on the fishkeeping market

Although COVID-19 impacted the fishkeeping world on any number of fronts, it’s done little to slow overall market growth. Instead, lockdown restrictions imposed during the pandemic have actually been credited with promoting growth in the sector. That’s as families and individuals sought to embrace new interests as holidays and other activities were cancelled.

Watching an aquarium has also long been touted to help reduce stress and anxiety – another reason many people have recently installed their own tanks.

Aquarium trade continues to boost the economy

According to KBV Research’s recent study, the aquarium industry continues to generate both direct and indirect economic activity. That includes money spent directly on aquariums, as well as on associated goods and services like fish tank maintenance.

Crucially, this economic boost also extends to developing and under-developed countries. These countries, including Brazil and the Philippines, account for up to 60% of all aquarium fish exports.

Residential and commercial aquariums

It’s important to remember that the forecasted £7 billion value of the aquarium market includes both the residential and commercial sectors. While the hobbyist market is huge, the commercial portion of the industry is larger still. That is, perhaps, unsurprising when accounting for zoos and public aquariums, which, of course, fall into this sector.

For the purposes of KBV Research’s study, the market is segmented into tropical freshwater, temperate, and marine fish sales. Goldfish and other coldwater, pond-dwelling species presumably fall into the temperate segment. Either way, it’s the marine or saltwater portion of the market that’s registered the most substantial growth in revenue share recently, contributing significantly to the £7 billion valuation that the market as a whole is expected to hit in the next few years.

Aquarium blog

Are you looking for more fishkeeping news? If so, be sure to check out our aquarium blog for the latest stories from the pet fish world.