How are the lists of aquaculture recommended species developed?
Mr.Goodfish recommendations for aquaculture
What criteria does Goodfish use to make recommendations?
Three criteria have been selected for the establishment of the lists of recommended species in aquaculture:
Feed: Species must be fed with a quantity of fish meal respecting an optimized species-specific feed ratio:
- Fish meal must be obtained from a sustainable source, it means that fish meal must be produced from sustainably managed stocks (in growing proportion as part of the farming practices improvement).
- Other sources of sustainable proteins such as co-products, algae, insects and flax are encouraged.
Farming practices: Species must be farmed in optimal conditions for animal welfare and health:
- Antibiotics are used only on veterinary prescription and in compliance with European regulations.
- Goodfish has determined a maximum number of treatments per year.
- Species must be farmed in the respect of their natural behavioral with a species-specific density.
Environmental impact: Species must be farmed in optimal conditions with monitored and controlled impact on the environment:
- The dynamic balance between the production area and its environment must be maintained.
- When the production is made in an open environment, farmed species must be naturally present in the environment.
- Species must be fed with a quantity of fish meal respecting an optimized species-specific feed ration, avoiding the deposit of organic matter on the seabed.
- The level of fine particles present in the food must be less than 1%. The environment must not be affected by the presence of an aquaculture farm.
- Chemical products must be used only on veterinary prescription and in compliance with European regulations. Mr.Goodfish has determined a maximum number of treatments per year.
Mechanical and biological cleaning of production facilities are preferred.
In short: A species bred using a specific method can only be included on the Mr.Goodfish list of recommended species when the three criteria and their sub-criteria above are met.
In order to set up the lists of aquaculture recommended species, Mr.Goodfish has formed a committee of aquaculture experts regrouping the actors of the aquaculture sector. This committee includes:
- External scientists (IFREMER, INRA, CIRAD…)
- Nausicaá scientists,
- Inter-branch organization (CIPA),
- Food producers,
- Retailers (METRO, TRANSGOURMET, SEAFOOD),
- Consumer associations (CLCV),
- Members of the national coordination of the Mr.Goodfish programme.
First, scientific experts have been consulted on the relevance of the approach. Then, Mr.Goodfish has relied on scientific studies, including ID-Aqua, to select the most relevant sustainable indicators in line with the slogan « Good for the sea, good for you ». These indicators have been validated by the committee members.
Indicators and thresholds are based on those of existing labels and certifications, in order to avoid additional control process and to guide consumers towards these existing indicators.
The Mr.Goodfish aquaculture committee meets once a year to follow up on the different fish farmers who are part of the Mr.Goodfish programme. Producers follow a continuous improvement process. They have 2, 3 or 5 years to improve their practices for sustainable aquaculture.