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BAP LogoBAP Standards

The Best Aquaculture Practices (BAP) standards address environmental and social responsibility, animal welfare, food safety and traceability in a voluntary certification program for aquaculture facilities. BAP certification defines the most important elements of responsible aquaculture and provides quantitative guidelines by which to evaluate adherence to those practices.

The BAP program outlines standards for each type of facility, from hatchery and feed mill to farm and processing plant. The recent addition of new multi-species farm and hatchery standards for finfish and crustacean production opens up the program to a number of new species. Similarly, seafood processing plants can now be certified to a broader range of species. In addition, new BAP standards for mussel farms were completed in August 2013.

The new multi-species farm standards apply to all types of production systems for finfish and crustaceans, excluding cage-raised salmonids, which retain separate BAP standards. The new standards replace the species-specific standards previously established for shrimp, tilapia, Pangasius and channel catfish. The multi-species standards focus on culture systems, but maintain unique species-related aspects where applicable, through supplements.

The new BAP standards apply to species that include but are not limited to seabass, sea bream, cobia, seriola, trout, grouper, barramundi, perch, carp, flounder, turbot, striped bass, crabs, freshwater prawns and crawfish.

Drafted by technical committees with broad stakeholder representation and overseen by a Standards Oversight Committee, the BAP standards are more comprehensive than other certification systems. Although individual standards vary by facility type, all BAP standards address community and employee relations, conservation of biodiversity, soil and water management, and drug and chemical management.

To apply for BAP certification, please review the information on the Certification Process page. Farms new to BAP certification that raise fish or crustaceans other than salmonids must use the Finfish and Crustacean Farms Standards documents. Hatcheries and nurseries new to BAP certification must use the Finfish, Crustacean and Mollusk Hatchery/Nursery Standards documents.

Click below to view the current BAP standards and guidelines. These documents are provided for informational purposes only.

BAP Seafood Processing/Repacking Plant Standards (PDF)
BAP Seafood Processing Plant Standards -- Guidelines Only (Mandarin, PDF)
BAP Finfish and Crustacean Farm Standards (PDF)
BAP Salmon Farm Standards (PDF)
BAP Mussel Farm Standards (PDF)
BAP Shrimp Hatchery Standards (PDF)
   * New Finfish, Crustean and Mollusk Hatchery/Nursery Standards
BAP Feed Mill Standards (PDF)  |  ** New BAP Feed Mill Standards

* For currently certified shrimp hatcheries or those in the process of certification or application as of September 17, 2014, compliance with the new multi-species standards for hatcheries/nurseries will be mandatory for recertification beginning March 17, 2015. For new hatcheries/nurseries that raise shrimp or other species and are not yet certified or in process, the new standards are effective immediately as of September 17, 2014.

** For currently certified feed mills or those in the process of certification or application as of July 18, 2014, the new standards will be mandatory for recertification beginning January 1, 2015. For new feed mills not yet certified or in process, the new standards are effective immediately as of July 18, 2014.