The Brazilian authorities stopped gathering data about their seafood production, like fleet data, capture production and landing statistics, which makes it difficult to provide reliable figures about the number and type of vessel of the Brazilian fleet. Moreover, there are a lot of illegal vessels operating along the entire coast. The Brazilian marine fleet consist out of three categories: artisanal, coastal and long distance. A FAO report from 2007 states that at that time there were an estimated 23 thousand artisanal vessels, a coastal industrial fleet of 1,630 vessels and a industrial long distance fleet of 100 vessels. The inland fisheries were mostly composed of artisanal vessels responsible for 60% of total inland catch volume, and some industrial vessels.
Nowadays three fishing companies are responsible for 70% of all the landings of wild catch finfish and shrimp in Brazil: Kowalsky Fisheries, Pesqueira Pionera and Pesqueira Maguary. The Kowalsky Group is one of the biggest fishing companies in Brazil with 13 motorized steel hull vessels of about 20-30 metres each. Each vessel has 400hp engines. Pesqueira Pionera has 18 own vessels and a hundred partner vessels. All these vessels have their licenses for fishing tuna, snapper, croaker, mackerel, sword fish, etc. Another big fishing company in Brazil is Pesqueira Maguary which is specialized in the catch of shrimps, snappers and catfish (piramutaba). Next to these bigger companies there are hundreds of smaller steel hull motorized vessels and thousands of wooden hull vessels motioned by wind. These vessels only reach a length of about 10 meters.
Due to the vulnerability some species like tuna and snapper, it will be very difficult to have parts of Brazilian fishing industry MSC or Friends of the Seas certified. However, a Fishery Improvement Project (FIP) is being implemented for Caribbean red snapper – hook & line and pot/trap, and recently a memorandum has been established for a FIP for the pole and line skipjack, yellowfin and bigeye tuna fishery in the south and southeast coastal areas of Brazil.