A group of EU-funded scientists from 10 international locations has made new suggestions, designs and tools for the sustainable progress of European aquaculture. The project’s final results will be utilized to notify choices about future regulations and licensing.


© Trevor Telfer, 2009

Aquaculture is an spot that could have substantial economic price to Europe. The EU recognises the sector’s price in its Blue Growth method which seeks to harness the untapped opportunity of the maritime and maritime sectors for foods output and employment when focusing on environmental sustainability.

Having said that, a lack of successful and powerful licensing and regulation is hampering the aquaculture sector’s development. This condition is leading to missed possibilities for the output of seafood, significantly of which is presently imported. It also implies that European producers are getting rid of out on export possibilities. Over the decades, fish farming has also had its fair share of lousy push because of to weak procedures blamed for, among the many others, disorder in fish stocks and air pollution of the environment.

The EU-funded TAPAS challenge aims to modify this by supplying federal government regulators and policymakers the details and tools they have to have to set up robust, more successful regulatory frameworks that can direct to the sector’s progress and sustainable development. Task research embraced both the maritime and freshwater environments.

‘We structured TAPAS to deliver many essential outputs, together with policy suggestions, predictive environmental designs and an aquaculture toolbox for decision-makers,’ suggests Trevor Telfer, challenge coordinator from the College of Stirling, United Kingdom. ‘These results are progressive inside the challenge with each individual building from the other.’

Steering on licensing

The challenge commenced with a evaluate of latest laws and licensing procedures for aquaculture throughout Europe, which involved substantial session with stakeholders. This led to the drafting of policy and licensing suggestions as properly as direction for governance masking all concentrations of the business, from get started-ups to properly-proven organizations. The suggestions will be utilized mainly by federal government regulators charged with employing successful licensing rules.

TAPAS went on to develop predictive environmental designs and automated monitoring and info-recording devices based on research throughout Europe’s aquaculture sector. These innovations have been developed to assist put into action the project’s policy and licensing suggestions and will be of price to regulators as properly as researchers and business bodies.

The designs and monitoring devices deal with existing small-tech and substantial-tech aquaculture output devices. They could also assist in the introduction of new devices that could have different regulatory demands, this kind of as built-in multi-trophic aquaculture (IMTA). In IMTA, by-products this kind of as squander from a person species are utilized as fertiliser or foods for a different.

Improved picture

The project’s aquaculture toolbox supplies a world wide web-based decision-assist framework which can support in the development of fewer pricey, more clear and successful licensing of aquaculture in Europe.

‘The toolbox makes use of suitable modelling and direction outputs from the TAPAS challenge, but also supplies backlinks and direction to empower use of suitable results from other EU assignments and resources,’ explains Telfer. ‘The availability of the toolbox, its intuitive design and style and details will empower a much better comprehension of aquaculture regulation when also aiding to improve the public perception of European aquaculture.’

The TAPAS group is also endeavor coaching, dissemination and outreach things to do with the aim of strengthening the picture of European aquaculture and the uptake of the challenge final results by regulators.