Marine fisheries target and catch fish both for direct human consumption (DHC) as well as for fishmeal and fish oil, and other products. We derived the fractions used for each for 1950-2010 by fishing country, and thus provide a factual foundation for discussions of the optimal use of fisheries resources. From 1950 to 2010, 27% (~20 million tonnes annually) of globally reconstructed marine fisheries landings were destined for uses other than DHC. Importantly, 90% of fish destined for uses other than DHC are food-grade or prime food-grade fish, while fish without a ready market for DHC make up a much smaller proportion. These findings have implications for how we are using fish to feed ourselves or, more appropriately, how we are not using fish to feed ourselves.