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ASC publishes new RAS standards


(Photo: Kingfish Zeeland, Aquaculture Stewardship Council)

The Aquaculture Stewardship Council (ASC) is looking to broaden its program reach with two new updates.

ASC has published a new RAS module for recirculating aquaculture farms which includes new requirements on energy monitoring to reduce emissions and minimize negative effects on water resources. A RAS farm will have to meet these requirements in addition to ASC standard requirements for the species it is farming.

“Aquaculture is a fast-moving, innovative industry. This means we have to continuously review and adapt the ASC programme to make sure we’re still reflecting the industry, and current best practices,” said Michiel Fransen, ASC director of standards and science.

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“RAS farming, like all farming, has particular impacts. At ASC, we don’t believe one method of farming is inherently superior – we think what matters is the specific impacts are properly addressed and minimised.”

ASC has also introduced revisions to its Shrimp Standard document, adding four new genera of freshwater species – cherax, procambarus, astacus and macrobrachium. The council said that these new additions will mean that 99 per cent of globally farmed shrimp are now covered by the scope of the standard. The Revised Shrimp Standard also includes other updates in best practices.

“This revision spreads the potential positive impact of ASC by enabling more farmers to apply for certification, which requires both environmental and social responsibility,” said Fransen.