Global Aquaculture Alliance is the leading international organization dedicated to advancing environmentally and socially responsible aquaculture and a safe supply of seafood to meet growing world food needs. Organized in 1997, the non-profit NGO develops the Best Aquaculture Practices certification standards and encourages the use of responsible aquaculture practices. GAA also works to improve production and marketing efficiencies, and promote effective, coordinated regulatory and trade policies.
The mission of the Global Aquaculture Alliance is to further environmentally responsible aquaculture to meet world food needs.
Through its Best Aquaculture Practices program, GAA encourages the use of responsible production systems that are sustainable regarding environmental and community needs, and efficiently provide safe, wholesome aquaculture products to the world’s population.
GAA articulates the importance of aquaculture as a source of food and employment. It supports technological research and provides this information openly to membership and research facilities. The alliance also advocates for the industry regionally and globally, and promotes effective, coordinated government regulatory and international trade policies.
The Global Aquaculture Alliance exists to advance environmental and social responsibility throughout the raising, processing and distributing of aquaculture products. GAA therefore expects its members and affiliates to adhere to the following.
Guiding Principles for Responsible Aquaculture
Companies and individuals engaged in aquaculture, singularly and collectively:
Shall coordinate and collaborate with national, regional and local governments in the development and implementation of policies, regulations and procedures necessary and practicable to achieve environmental, economic and social sustainability of aquaculture operations.
- Shall utilize only those sites for aquaculture facilities whose characteristics are compatible with long-term sustainable operation with acceptable ecological effects, particularly avoiding unnecessary destruction of mangroves and other environmentally significant flora and fauna.
- Shall design and operate aquaculture facilities in a manner that conserves water resources, including underground sources of fresh water.
- Shall design and operate aquaculture facilities in a manner that minimizes the effects of effluents on surface and ground water quality and sustains ecological diversity.
- Shall strive for continuing improvements in feed use and shall use therapeutic agents judiciously in accordance with appropriate regulations and only when needed based on common sense and best scientific judgment.
- Shall take all reasonable measures necessary to avoid disease outbreaks among culture species, between local farm sites and across geographic areas.
- Shall take all reasonable steps to ascertain that permissible introductions of exotic species are done in a responsible and acceptable manner and in accordance with appropriate regulations.
- Shall cooperate with others in the industry in research and technological and educational activities intended to improve the environmental compatibility of aquaculture.
- Shall strive to benefit local economies and community life through diversification of the local economy, promotion of employment, contributions to the tax base and infrastructure, and respect for artisanal fisheries, forestry and agriculture.
The Global Aquaculture Alliance is the leading standard-setting organization for farmed seafood. Its main activities include development of the Best Aquaculture Practices certification standards, organization of theGOAL aquaculture leadership conferences and publication of the Global Aquaculture Advocate and www.gaalliance.org website.
Best Aquaculture Practices Certification
The BAP standards -- developed by technical committees under a Standards Oversight Committee of diverse stakeholders -- provide quantitative criteria that define sustainability and food safety at aquaculture facilities. BAP standards are now in use for feed mills, processing plants and farms that raise a variety of finish and crustacean species.
Annual GOAL Conferences
GAA's Global Outlook for Aquaculture Leadership marketing meetings are strategic events where leading seafood buyers, producers and suppliers come together for expert updates on the global supply and demand of farmed fish and shrimp. The events present a forum in which global players can candidly discuss issues and generate consensus solutions.
GAA publishes the Global Aquaculture Advocate magazine and maintains an online archive of past articles. It also offers several other publications on responsible aquaculture. The www.gaalliance.org website andGAA Update e-newsletters keep members and others informed of GAA’s programs, policies and important role in aquaculture.