Brussels – The newly created European Aquaculture Advisory Council (AAC) held its first General Assembly meeting today. An initial Executive Committee of fourteen members was elected, a work programme was approved and three working groups on finfish, shellfish, and horizontal matters were established.
Over the last 3 years, Seas At Risk has been one of the driving forces behind the creation of the AAC, working with the sector on drafting the AAC’s statutes and procedures and coordinating the input of environmental NGOs. SAR was elected as one of the two vice-chairs.
The AAC – together with the Market Advisory Council – was created in line with the reformed Common Fisheries Policy. The main task of the AAC in the coming years will be to contribute to the sustainable development of European aquaculture by preparing and providing advice to Member States and to the European Commission on issues relating to the aquaculture value chain.
Sixty percent of the AAC Executive Committee will be made up of stakeholders from the industry, including aquaculture production sectors, feed and ingredient suppliers, processing and employees. Other interest groups such as NGOs and consumer organisations will be represented in the remaining forty percent of the Executive Committee.
The next General Assembly meeting will take place in October when all interested stakeholder organisations will be invited to attend and join the AAC, as well as its Working Groups.
Seas At Risk looks forward to actively participating in the debate on aquaculture within the AAC and to shape a more sustainable and environmentally responsible aquaculture sector in the EU.