The Global Aquaculture Alliance’s Best Aquaculture Practices (BAP) certification program continued to grow in 2019, with 2,681 BAP-certified processing plants, farms, hatcheries and feed mills worldwide by the end of the year. That’s up almost 15 percent from the program’s 2018 count, according to the GAA’s annual report.
Created by the GAA in 2008, BAP has the mission of providing quantitative guidelines for evaluations of best practices in aquaculture.
“As we look forward to 2020, our eyes are fixed on the horizon and humanity’s enormous challenge of increasing protein production by 30 to 50 percent by 2050, while simultaneously reducing environmental impact,” GAA President George Chamberlain said in a letter included in the report. “Aquaculture will have a major role, but we must work hard to sustainably intensify our production methods. GAA does this not only through BAP certification activities, but also through initiatives focused on the improver space and on leading-edge technologies.”
The BAP certification has now been awarded to 388 processing plants, 1,833 farms, 132 feed mills, 279 hatcheries, and 49 reprocessors.
In 2019, the program integrity team traveled to 13 countries to visit BAP-certified facilities, and food-safety laboratories, and the GAA conducted auditor training courses in Santiago, Chile; Portsmouth, New Hampshire, U.S.A.; and Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam. BAP has certified auditors in more than 20 countries worldwide.
GAA introduced a redesigned dashboard with the launch of the new BAP website in October 2019, with the goal of displaying supply chain data in a more user-friendly way. For 2020, BAP plans to launch a new Supply Chain Transparency (SCT) program plant view, which will allow all BAP-certified plants sourcing BAP-certified products to access their production chain data.
This year, GAA initiated a traceability study in order to better understand where the seafood industry currently stands regarding traceability initiatives and operations. Data-verification pilot programs are expected to launch at a select few BAP certified facilities within several weeks, according to the report.