Aquaculture standards consultation

24 June - 24 August 2015

FishThis is a consultation on proposed changes to the Soil Association organic aquaculture standards. Our standards are underpinned by European law which gives consumers confidence in the food they buy. Organic aquaculture products such as salmon and trout with the Soil Association’s symbol are certified to additional standards, recommended by our expert standards committee.

We want our standards to have the maximum impact with the minimum hassle for licensees so we are reviewing them to ensure they are practical and deliver the organic principles of health, ecology, fairness and care. In this consultation we are looking for views from our licensees, industry stakeholders and anyone with an interest in organic aquaculture about the Soil Association additional standards - those over and above the EU law. These are highlighted in the consultation document, in the survey and are summarised here:

  • A new standard for responsible site selection
  • Maintaining additional standards to ensure:
    - Good animal welfare;
    - Water quality;
    - Suitable veterinary treatments and withdrawal periods;
    - Mussel seed dredging is restricted.
  • Prohibiting the use of maerl, lithothamn and Breton ameliorant in feeds and/or fertilisers for inland fish species.
  • New standards for organic seaweed production, based on the EU organic regulation.

Timescale for consultation and publication

  • This consultation is open until 5pm on Monday 24 August.
  • The Aquaculture Standards Committee will meet to discuss the consultation findings in early September.
  • Their recommendations will be considered by our Standards Board in late September.
  • Standards Board’s recommendations will be discussed by Soil Association Council in November.
  • If agreed, the new Soil Association organic aquaculture standards will be published in January 2016.
  • A suitable lead-in time for licensees and applicants to meet any additional standards will be provided.

How you can participate

Please take the survey on the proposed new standards below. It will take between 15-30 minutes to complete. You can see the full standards document here [pdf, 879kb]. You can also call the Standards Team on 0117 314 5178, email or write to us at Soil Association, South Plaza, Marlborough Street, Bristol BS1 3NX.

If you are having difficulties accessing the form below, please complete the form here instead.