Print This Page

June 14, 2015

United States

Missouri—GAA’s Position on Antibiotics and Social Justice


The Global Aquaculture Alliance is against the abuse of antibiotics and social injustice in aquaculture, and its Best Aquaculture Practices (BAP) certification program provides a mechanism to follow up on alleged infractions.


Antibiotic Abuse: The BAP standards forbid the use of prohibited antibiotics, drugs and other chemicals on fish and crustacean farms, and farms are required to record any antibiotic use.  If antibiotics that are not prohibited for use in local and importing countries are used for therapeutic purposes, residue tests are required after the withdrawal period to ensure food safety regulations are met.


In BAP processing plants, processors and third-party laboratories are required to collect random samples to test for antibiotic residues, which is also part of the HACCP Plan requirements and supplier performance-monitoring requirements.  Third-party auditors also collect random samples for testing during the auditing process.


The BAP management team monitors the USA Food and Drug Administrations detention list regularly.  If a BAP-certified facility lands on the list for a prohibited antibiotic, it is required to take corrective action and must provide proof of such before it can be certified or recertified.  Facilities that fail to take corrective action are decertified.


Given the growing concern regarding antibiotic use, GAA is developing a more rigorous risk-based testing methodology that will require automatic heightened testing of processing plants where antibiotic residues are detected.


Social Justice: In light of media reports of worker abuse in the seafood supply chain, the Global Aquaculture Alliance has reiterated that social justice is one of the pillars of its BAP certification standards.  BAP-certified processing plants, farms, hatcheries and feed mills are required to provide adequate wages and a safe and healthy working environment, and prevent child labor and forced labor.


GAA is working collectively with the International Fishmeal and Fish Oil Organization (IFFO) and several international seafood suppliers and retailers to address social concerns related to aquafeed production and agreed to a position statement in 2014.  GAA is also working with the Aquaculture Stewardship Council and GlobalGAP on social concerns.  The three certification organizations have been collaborating since signing a memorandum of understanding in April 2013.


Source: The Global Aquaculture Advocate (The Global Magazine for Farmed Seafood).  Editor, Darryl Jory (  GAA Confirms Positions on Antibiotic Abuse, Social Justice.  Volume 18, Issue 3, Page 9, May/June 2015.

Print This Page