RASTECH Magazine

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Public consultation farmed fish welfare standards launched


(Image: Aquaculture Stewardship Council)

The Aquaculture Stewardship Council, a global certification body serving the industry, has recently launched a world-wide public consultation campaign aimed at developing new requirements to improve the welfare of farmed fish.

The public consultation is running from September 1 to October 31, 2021. The requirements will take advantage of new developments and research to cover issues including water quality, stocking density and slaughter, according to the ASC.

The first phase of the welfare project will include:

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  • Requirements of best practice for water quality
  • Setting of limits for stocking density to require best practice
  • As an initial approach, prohibiting a number of slaughter practices: asphyxia (suffocation); Carbon dioxide; salt baths or ammonia. Further requirements on slaughter will be added in later phases, such as the prohibition of the use of ice slurry for slaughter, to encourage ongoing improvements.

The phase one requirements will apply to ASC certified finfish farms. The phase will also include  a requirement for good management practice for all farmers of fish, crustacean and bivalve species, covering issues such as staff training and risk assessment.

A second phase will follow for public consultation at a later date.

The ASC is also consulting the public on important documents that will accompany the recently published ASC Feed Standard.

Click on this link for more information and access to the consultation on the Fish Welfare Project page.

The consultation on the Feed Standard supporting documents can be found on the Feed CAR/RUoC page.