Since the “Global Conference on Small-Scale Fisheries – Securing Sustainable Small- Scale Fisheries: Bringing together responsible fisheries and social development”, held in 2008 in Bangkok by WorldFish, the World Forum of Fish Harvesters and Fish Workers (WFF) and World Forum of Fisher Peoples (WFFP), with the support of the International Collective in Support of Fishworkers (ICSF) were asking to include a specific chapter in the Code of Conduct for Responsible Fisheries (CCRF) on small-scale fisheries, recognising the obligations of States towards them and creating the environment for fishing communities to enjoy these rights fully.
The IPC Working Group on Fisheries, coordinated by WFF and WFFP, organized around 25 national and regional consultations with small-scale fisheries organizations on the development of the SSF Guidelines in Central America, Africa, South Asia, and South-East Asia.
In 2014, the Committee on Fisheries (COFI) of the FAO endorsed the Voluntary Guidelines for Securing Sustainable Small-Scale Fisheries in the Context of Food Security and Poverty Eradication (SSF-Guidelines). The IPC Working Group on Fisheries played a crucial role in their technical negotiations. The SSF-Guidelines are deeply anchored in human rights and a holistic integrated approach, explicitly prioritizing marginalized groups and gender equality.