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Last update: May 2021

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Legal Aspects

An overview of the legislation relevant to aquaculture on a world, regional and national scale

The aquaculture sector is affected by numerous international and regional environmental and wildlife conventions, such as the Rio de Janeiro Convention on Biological Diversity (1992), the Bonn Convention on the Conservation of Migratory Species of Wild Animals (1979) and the Ramsar Convention on Wetlands of International Importance (1995). By ratifying these conventions, countries commit themselves to protecting wildlife sites, fauna and flora and biodiversity and to integrate principles of sustainable use into development policies.
On a national scale, the FAO has compiled an aquaculture legislation overview for selected countries from every continent. These country factsheets can be accessed on the FAO website.
To provide national examples of veterinary medicine controls; in the U.S.A the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service Aquatic Animal Drug Approval Partnership (AADAP) Program provides guidance on the use of drugs in aquaculture. Their website contains a list of approved drugs and factsheets, which include details on their purpose, source, method of administration and dosage. On a French national scale, the French Food Agency (AFSSA) incorporates the National Agency for Veterinary Drugs (ANMV), which is in charge of marketing authorisations for veterinary drugs, as well as control of veterinary pharmaceutical establishments and quality assurance of veterinary products. The ANMV website provides summaries of the product characteristics of authorised veterinary medicine products.
The FAO has also produced a voluntary Code of Conduct for responsible fisheries. Principles and international standards for responsible practices ares set out, aiming to ensure the effective conservation, management and development of living aquatic resources, whilst respecting the ecosystem and biodiversity. Further information on this code of conduct can be accessed on the FAO website.

European Legislation & Guidelines

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