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Aquaculture: The European Commission shares recommendations and good practices

In 2021, the European Commission has adopted strategic guidelines to support the growth of European aquaculture. These guidelines set out a vision, shared by all stakeholders, to make the sector more competitive, resilient, and the global role model for sustainability.

The guidelines set out four objectives:

  • to strengthen resilience and competitiveness
  • to participate in the green transition
  • ensuring social acceptance and consumer information; and
  • increasing knowledge and innovation.


To achieve these objectives, the European Commission has published two working documents designed to help EU Member States promote sustainable growth in aquaculture.

These documents respond to the demand from aquaculture producers to reduce the administrative burden on establishing and operating aquaculture sites in the EU.


Tackling the obstacles to aquaculture growth

The documents address two major obstacles to the growth of aquaculture in many EU Member States, namely

  • a complex regulatory framework and unnecessarily difficult administrative procedures, and
  • difficulties in accessing the space and water needed to develop marine aquaculture.

They consolidate good practice and provide concrete examples of how it has been applied in some EU Member States. Given the proximity of Norway and the UK to the EU and the importance of their aquaculture sectors, the documents also examine their good practices.


Next steps

The European Commission will continue to publish updates of these documents on the EU aquaculture website.

Also, the Commission will offer specific training on these documents to Member State authorities responsible for aquaculture development.  An e-learning module for each of these documents will also be available on the EU aquaculture website.


The two working documents can be found:

Commission’s Staff working document “Implementing the Strategic Guidelines for EU aquaculture- Regulatory and administrative framework for aquaculture”

Commission’s Staff working document “Implementing the Strategic Guidelines on EU Aquaculture- Planning of space and access to water for marine aquaculture”

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