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  1. Profile
    1. Basic legislation
    2. Legal definition
    3. Guidelines and codes of conduct
    4. International arrangements
  2. Planning
    1. Authorization system
    2. Access to land and water
    3. EIA
  3. Operation
    1. Water and wastewater
    2. Fish movement
    3. Disease control
    4. Drugs
    5. Feed
  4. Food safety
    1. Miscellaneous
      1. References
        1. Legislation
        2. Related resources
      2. Related links
        Profile
        Basic legislation
        French aquaculture is ruled by two main sets of legislation, clearly separating inland and marine aquaculture. Inland aquaculture, coupled with inland fisheries, is regulated by the Environmental Code   (Code de l’Environnement), while marine aquaculture must abide by marine fisheries legislation, among which are Law No.97-1051 on Maritime Fisheries and Mariculture (Loi 97-1051 d’Orientation sur la Pêche Maritime et sur les Cultures Marines) (1997), and Decree of January 9th, 1852 on Maritime Fisheries (Décret du 9 janvier 1852 – Décret sur l'exercice de la pêche maritime) (1852, as amended). The latter explicitly extends the applicability of its provisions to the farming of marine animals and plants («l'élevage des animaux et (...) la culture des végétaux marins»).

        The main authority in charge of fisheries and aquaculture is the Ministry of Agriculture, Food, Fisheries and Rurality (Ministre de l’Agriculture, de l’Alimentation, de la Pêche et de la Ruralité). The Aquaculture Division (Sous-Direction de l’Aquaculture – SDA) operates within the Department of Marine Fisheries and Aquaculture (Direction des Pêches Maritimes et de l'Aquaculture – DPMA) of the Ministry. Decree No.2002-897 concerning the functions of the Minister of Agriculture, Food, Fisheries and Rural Affairs (Décret No.2002-897 relatif aux attributions du Ministre de l'agriculture, de l'alimentation, de la pêche et des affaires rurales) (2002) establishes that said Ministry is in charge of preparing and implementing the Government's policy on agriculture, marine fisheries and aquaculture, forests and food. On matters concerning marine fisheries and aquaculture, the Ministry may collaborate with the Department of Maritime Affairs and People of the Sea (Direction des Affaires Maritimes et des Gens de Mer – DAMGM) of the Ministry of Infrastructure, Transport, Land Use, Tourism and the Sea (Ministre de l’Equipement, des Transports, de l’Aménagement du Territoire, du Tourisme et de la Mer). This Ministry is, in fact, responsible for the national maritime policy development. However, Decree No.2004-320 concerning the functions of the Minister of Infrastructure, Transport, Land Use, Tourism and the Sea  (Décret No.2004-320 du 8 avril 2004 relatif aux attributions du Ministre de l'équipement, des transports, de l'aménagement du territoire, du tourisme et de la mer) (2004) explicitly excludes marine fisheries and aquaculture policy from its competencies.

        The institutional framework is then enhanced by Law No.97-1051 on Maritime Fisheries and Mariculture, through the creation of a High Council for Fisheries, Aquaculture and Fish Products Policies Orientation (Conseil Supérieur d’Orientation des Politiques Halieutiques, Aquacoles et Halioalimentaires) and the establishment of a National Interprofessional Office for Marine and Aquaculture Products (Office National Interprofessionnel des Produits de la Mer et de l’Aquaculture – OFIMER). Both entities are attached to the Ministry of Agriculture.

        The former is regulated by Decree No.98-1060 concerning the High Council for Fisheries, Aquaculture and Fish Products Policies Orientation. (Décret No.98-1060 relatif au Conseil Supérieur d'Orientation des Politiques Halieutique, Aquacole et Halioalimentaire) (1998), which ensures that the main institutional, social and economic actors dealing with fisheries and aquaculture at national level are represented. From a functional viewpoint, the High Council is vested with consultative powers and participates in the definition, coordination, implementation and assessment of fisheries-related policies.

        The composition and functioning of OFIMER has been incorporated in the Regulations to the Rural Code (Code Rural – Partie Réglementaire). As a public body operating in the industrial and commercial sectors, OFIMER is mainly responsible for fish market regulation, through the implementation of orientation and intervention measures to ensure the development of fish products trade, as well as the efficiency of the fish industry. Its tasks include markets monitoring and fish products promotion.
        Legal definition
        In France, as mentioned above, aquaculture is not regulated as a whole. Inland fisheries legislation applies to inland aquaculture (pisciculture continentale), whereas mariculture (élevages marins, cultures marines) is regulated under marine fisheries legislation. Moreover, specific provisions are made with regard to shellfish culture (conchyliculture), as opposed to marine fish farming (pisciculture marine). Consequently, separate definitions may be given in the legislation. For instance, Decree No.83-228 establishing the authorization system for marine aquaculture (Décret No.83-228 fixant le régime de l'autorisation des exploitations de cultures marines) (1983), defines mariculture farms as enterprises intended for biological production purposes, including capture, cultivation, processing, storage, conditioning and shipping of marine products («les exploitations de cultures marines, c'est-à-dire les établissements destinés à des fins de productions biologiques, comprenant notamment captage, élevage, affinage, traitement, entreposage, conditionnement et expédition de produits de la mer»). A functional definition is found in the Environmental Code, section L431-6, where fish farming is the raising of fish intended for consumption or repopulation, or with scientific, experimental or tourism-related purposes («On entend par pisciculture les exploitations d'élevage de poissons destinés à la consommation ou au repeuplement, ou à des fins scientifiques, ou expérimentales, ou de valorisation touristique»).

        However, it is worth mentioning that all types of aquaculture are included in the definition of rural activities given by the Rural Code  (L311-1): "Rural activities are those involving the control and exploitation of the biological cycle of a plant or animal, and consisting of one or several steps within the development of such cycle, as well as the activities deriving from production or based on such exploitation, that are carried out by a farmer. Mariculture is considered as a rural activity, despite the social status of those performing it" («Sont réputées agricoles toutes les activités correspondant à la maîtrise et à l'exploitation d'un cycle biologique de caractère végétal ou animal et constituant une ou plusieurs étapes nécessaires au déroulement de ce cycle ainsi que les activités exercées par un exploitant agricole qui sont dans le prolongement de l'acte de production ou qui ont pour support l'exploitation. Les activités de cultures marines sont réputées agricoles, nonobstant le statut social dont relèvent ceux qui les pratiquent»). This implies the application to aquaculture of a whole set of regulations originally designed for agricultural activities, including in particular those relating to public aid, labour rights and financial benefits.

        This approach follows the path set by the Common Agriculture Policy and the Common Fisheries Policy of the EU. Concerning the latter, a reform is currently underway, which should draw the attention on three main aspects of aquaculture: employment, products quality and animal health, and environment.
        Guidelines and codes of conduct
        The aquaculture sector is represented by several associations at national, regional and local level.

        Membership in the National Committee for Shellfish Culture (Comité National de la Conchyliculture – CNC) is mandatory for all shellfish producers. At regional level, shellfish farmers are represented by the Regional Shellfish Culture Sections (Sections Régionales Conchylicoles – SRC). CNC and SRCs are regulated by Law No.91-411 concerning the interprofessional organization of marine fisheries and aquaculture, and the organization of shellfish culture (Loi No.91-411 du 2 mai 1991 relative à l'organisation interprofessionnelle des pêches maritimes et des élevages marins et à l'organisation de la conchyliculture) (1991) and by Decree No.91-1276 regulating the functioning of interprofessional shellfish culture organizations (Décret No.91-1276 du 19 décembre 1991 fixant les modalités d'organisation et de fonctionnement des organismes interprofessionnels de la conchyliculture) (1991).

        Similarly organized is the marine fisheries and aquaculture sector, pursuant to Law No.91-411 concerning the interprofessional organization of marine fisheries and aquaculture, and the organization of shellfish culture and Decree No.92-335 regulating the functioning of the National Committee for Maritime Fisheries and Marine Aquaculture, as well as the Regional and Local Committees for Maritime Fisheries and Marine Aquaculture (Décret No.92-335 du 30 mars 1992 fixant les règles d’organisation et de fonctionnement du Comité national des pêches maritimes et des élevages marins, ainsi que des comités régionaux et locaux des pêches maritimes et des élevages marins) (1992). However, these committees (CNPMEM, CRPMEM, and CLPMEM) are only partially representative of fish farming in France, since membership is not open to freshwater aquaculture farmers.

        Consequently, we may say that, being open to both freshwater and marine fish farmers, the French Aquaculture Federation (Fédération Française d’Aquaculture – FFA) is the national fish farming association. Since 2003, the French Association of Pond Fish Farming Professionals (Association Française des Professionnels de la Pisciculture d'Etangs – AFPPE) has joined the Federation. FFA is a member of the Interprofessional Committee for Aquaculture Products (Comité Interprofessionnel des Produits de l’Aquaculture – CIPA), created in 1997 and granted official status less than a year later. CIPA is formed by three main national associations, one for each business sector: producers (i.e. farmers, throught FFA), processing companies (mainly trout processing plants), and the food sector (aquaculture products).

        At EU level, membership in FEAP (Federation of European Aquaculture Producers) is open to all national aquaculture associations. FEAP members adopt the 2000 Code of Conduct for European Aquaculture.
        International arrangements
        France is a member of the World Trade Organization (WTO) and a founding member of the European Union.

        France is also a party to the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora (CITES), and has ratified both the Convention on Biological Diversity (CBD) and the Biosafety Protocol.

        France is a member of the International Council for the Exploration of the Sea (ICES). Particularly relevant for marine aquaculture are the outputs of the Working Group on the Application of Genetics in Fisheries and Mariculture (WGAGFM) and the ICES Code of Practice on the Introductions and Transfers of Marine Organisms (2003)  .

        It is worth reminding that France and the EU are both parties to the Barcelona Convention of 1976 for the Protection of the Marine Environment and the Coastal Region of the Mediterranean. Although it does not explicitly cover aquaculture, said Convention is likely to allow the development of regulatory instruments, through the adoption of a Code of Conduct or the definition of Best Environmental Practices.

        France and the EU are also parties to the OSPAR Convention for the Protection of the Marine Environment of the North-East Atlantic. Under said Convention, PARCOM issued Recommendation No.94/6 on Best Environmental Practice (BEP) for the Reduction of Inputs of Potentially Toxic Chemicals from Aquaculture Use (1994)  , to endorse the drafting and adoption of Codes of Best Environmental Practice (BEP) by national authorities.

        Lastly, as an EU member, France indirectly participates in the North Atlantic Salmon Conservation Organization, which adopted in 2003 the Resolution to Minimise Impacts from Aquaculture, Introductions and Transfers, and Transgenics, also known as the Williamsburg Resolution  .
        Planning
        Authorization system
        The establishment of aquaculture facilities over private land requires the granting of an authorization (autorisation), whereas a concession (concession) is necessary for the use of State-owned waterbodies. Both systems include an EIA procedure that will be reviewed in the relevant paragraph below.

        Inland aquaculture is regulated under the Environmental Code, Book IV, Title III on inland fisheries and fishery resources management (pêche en eau douce et gestion des ressources piscicoles – sections L431-432 and R231-232). Authorizations and permits are denied to farming activities that seem to threaten the fish population of the surrounding waters, in particular allowing free movement of farmed fish in the watercourse or causing such water pollution that would put fish life in jeopardy.

        Authorization:
        Applications must be filed with the competent Prefect, and provide the following information:
        • Identification of the applicant.
        • Name and type of watercourse or waterbody, including a map of the area.
        • Evidence that the applicant holds a fishing right (droit de pêche) in the concerned waterbody and, in case the applicant is not the riparian landowner (propriétaire riverain); authorization of the landowner for the conduct of aquaculture; or any relevant water right.
        • Detailed map of the aquaculture farm.
        • Type of aquaculture.
        • Fish farming method, farmed species, production or experimentation goals, and harvesting techniques.
        • Recommended measures to ensure fish movement, water quality, and avoid endangering the surrounding fish population.
        • Drainage programme.
        • Required duration of the authorization, and financial capacity of the applicant.
        Within the following two months, the Prefect must either reject the application or require an Environmental Impact Study (Etude d'impact) or an Environmental Impact Notice (Notice d’impact) to be handed in within a maximum period of two years. Criteria and procedures are reviewed in the paragraph on EIA below. Upon reception of the study, the Prefect starts a public enquiry. As established in the Annex to Decree No.85-453 implementing Law No.83-630 concerning the democratization of public enquiries and the protection of the environment  (Décret No.85-453 pris pour l'application de la loi n° 83-630 du 12 juillet 1983 relative à la démocratisation des enquêtes publiques et à la protection de l'environnement) (1985, as amended), projects requiring the presentation of an environmental notice are not subject to a public enquiry.

        The authorization contains:
        1. Name of authorization holder.
        2. Location and type of aquaculture farm.
        3. Type of device avoiding fish movement in and out of the farm area.
        4. Farmed species.
        5. Farming and harvesting techniques.
        6. Duration of authorization.
        7. Deadline for the completion of works.
        In case of by-channels, additional provisions are made in the authorization, concerning the necessary volume of water to ensure fish life, the water drainage programme, devices ensuring free movement of wild species and measures to protect the aquatic environment.

        Once approved, the authorization is notified to the applicant. Timely completion of works must be communicated to the Prefect, who shall order an inspection to be carried out within the following month. The farm may only start operating upon notification of the inspection report.

        Authorizations are granted for a maximum of thirty years and may be renewed, amended, transferred and revoked.

        Concession:
        Applications must be filed with the competent Prefect, and provide the following documentation:
        1. Identification of the applicant.
        2. Name and type of watercourse or waterbody, including a map of the area.
        3. Detailed map of the aquaculture farm.
        4. Type of aquaculture.
        5. Fish farming method, farmed species, production or experimentation goals, and harvesting techniques
        6. Recommended measures to ensure fish movement, water quality, and avoid endangering the surrounding fish population.
        7. Drainage programme.
        8. Required duration of the authorization, and financial capacity of the applicant.
        The concession must identify the rights granted by the State and the fees to be paid by the applicant.

        The procedure follows the same pattern as described above, including the environmental impact assessment. However, in this case, the Director of the Financial Service is involved in the process, in order to establish the fees for the granting of the fishing right (which is vested in the State), and those for the occupation of State-owned land and for the use of water. In addition, the applicant must approve the terms of the concession and may only start the construction works after paying the first instalment of the fees.

        Concessions are granted for a maximum of thirty years and may be renewed, amended, suspended and revoked.

        Marine aquaculture is regulated by Law No.97-1051 on Maritime Fisheries and Mariculture , Decree January 9th, 1852 on Maritime Fisheries and Decree No.83-228 establishing the authorization system for marine aquaculture.The main type of mariculture in France is shellfish farming, which represents 80 percent of the total aquaculture production.

        The Fisheries Law of 1997 clarifies the double nature of mariculture, defining it as a rural activity on the one hand, and including aquaculture vessels in a new navigation category on the other. These provisions respectively amend the Rural Code and Law No.42-427 concerning Maritime Navigation Titles  (Loi No.42-427 relative aux titres de navigation maritime) (1942, as amended). The amendment to the latter actually provides that a fourth category of navigation, specifically concerning marine aquaculture, must be created next to those of commerce, maritime fisheries and leisure. This includes the creation of the corresponding muster roll (rôle d’équipage).
        If the total navigation needed to exploit a maritime concession lot is three miles or more, the vessel must receive a muster roll. Below this distance, vessels only need a navigation permit, but may as well receive a muster roll.

        In addition, the conduct of aquaculture in salt waters requires the granting of a special authorization as established by Decree January 9th, 1852 on Maritime Fisheries. The procedures are defined by Decree No.83-228 establishing the authorization system for marine aquaculture.

        Two different types of concessions are established for the set up of aquaculture facilities on the maritime State property, and for the use of marine water for the operation of an aquaculture farm on a private estate.

        Marine aquaculture concession:
        The Decree provides for nationality requirements and professional qualifications to be met by applicants, be they natural persons, legal persons or public bodies. are also set forth.

        Applications must be addressed to the Departmental or Inter-Departmental Director of Maritime Affairs (Directeur Départemental ou Interdépartemental des Affaires Maritimes), which is a local authority attached to the Ministry of Infrastructure. Depending on the cost, size or location of the project, the procedure may involve a public enquiry, as established in the Annex to Decree No.85-453 implementing Law No.83-630 concerning the democratization of public enquiries and the protection of the environment. The advice of the following authorities is required: tax authority, local health service, consumers' service, French Research Institute for Exploitation of the Sea (Institut français de recherche pour l'exploitation de la mer – IFREMER), concerned Municipal Authorities and relevant professional organizations. The final opinion is given by the local Commission for Marine Aquaculture (Commission des cultures marines), which is vested with administrative and regulatory powers. The concession is then issued by the Prefect, commissioner of the Republic of the relevant department, and notified to the applicant.

        The duration of a concession must not exceed thirty-five years and may be renewed, amended, transferred, suspended or revoked.

        Marine water use concession:
        Applications for the use or marine waters to set up an aquaculture farm on a private property must be filed with the Prefect, by the landowner or tenant. The applicant must meet the same nationality requirements and professional qualifications as above, and the procedure to be followed is basically the same.

        As explained in the relevant paragraph below, no EIA procedure is provided for the set up of shellfish farms. Only marine aquaculture farms over a certain size are subject to the EIA procedure defined in the Environmental Code – Book I.
        Access to land and water
        Water use is regulated under Book II, Title I of the Environmental Code.   A draft Law on Water  (Projet de loi sur l’eau et les milieux aquatiques), amending the water provisions of the Environmental Code, was presented in 2005, and passed the first reading in the Senate in April. It is interesting to point out that the Code lists agriculture, fisheries and aquaculture among the priorities in water management. Any installation, construction or activity not considered as a classified installation  , and involving the use of water or the discharge of effluents affecting waterbodies, requires an authorization or a declaration, depending on the significance of the threat to water resources and aquatic ecosystems. Aquaculture facilities are not specifically mentioned. According to the draft water law, the use of water for aquaculture is exempt from the payment of the water use fee.

        The main water authority at national level is the Ministry of Ecology and Sustainable Development (Ministère de l'Écologie et du Développement Durable). A National Water Committee (Comité National de l'Eau) with advisory function also operates at national level. Moreover, each basin or group of basins is managed by a Basin Committee (Comité de bassin) with advisory functions and a Water Agency (Agence de l'eau) with administrative tasks.

        Coastal zone management (littoral) is tackled in Book II, Title II of the Environmental Code, which mentions aquaculture among the activities having priority in the use of coastal zones, outside industrial or port areas. Coastal management is lead by the Conservatory of coastal areas and lake shores (Conservatoire de l'espace littoral et des rivages lacustres).
        EIA
        At EU level, the main directives on EIA are Council Directive (EEC) No.337/1985 on the Assessment of the Effects of Certain Public and Private Projects on the Environment, and European Parliament and Council Directive (EC) No.42/2001 on the Assessment of the Effects of Certain Plans and Programmes on the Environment.

        At national level, the Environmental Impact Assessment system is regulated in Book I of the Environmental Code and in Decree No.77-1141 implementing article 2 of Law No.76-629 on the Protection of Nature (Décret No.77-1141 pris pour l'application de l'article 2 de la loi No.76-629 du 10 juillet 1976 relative à la protection de la nature) (1977, as amended).

        The Environmental Code (Book II of the Regulations to the Code) establishes a specific procedure for the Environmental Impact Assessment of inland aquaculture, which is not applicable to shellfish culture and marine aquaculture in general, as reported above, in the paragraph describing the authorization system. After receiving an application for an authorization or a concession to set up an inland aquaculture farm, the Prefect must request an environmental study (étude d'impact) or notice (notice d'impact), to be carried out within a maximum period of two years at the applicant's expense. The presentation of a study is mandatory for the following aquaculture projects:
        • Salmon aquaculture farms.
        • Aquaculture farms with scientific or experimental purposes.
        • Fish farms with an annual production exceeding 2 tonnes or with a water surface over 3 hectares.
        • Fish farms intending to extend their production or surface to or over said thresholds.
        An environmental notice is required for any other type of aquaculture facility.

        The public enquiry preceding the preparation of the Environmental Impact Study is lead by a commission to be nominated by the President of the Administrative Court. The enquiry may last from one month to one month and 15 days.

        The study must include:
        • An analysis of the initial state of the site and its surrounding environment.
        • An analysis of the direct and indirect, temporary and permanent effects of the project on the environment.
        • The reasons for the setting up of the project.
        • The mitigation, elimination or compensation measures proposed by the applicant.
        • An analysis of the methods used to assess the project’s impact.
        • A non-technical summary of the information presented in the study for public use.
        The report of the public enquiry must present all counter-proposals made by interested persons during the enquiry and the response of the applicant, if any.

        The Environmental Impact Notice must identify possible impacts on the environment and determine the conditions under which the project can avoid them. No public enquiry is required.

        With regard to marine aquaculture, Decree No.77-1141 implementing article 2 of Law No.76-269 concerning the protection of nature provides that an EIA is only required for farms considered as classified installations. Decree No.53-578 establishing the categories of classified installations   (Décret n° 53-578 du 20 mai 1953 modifié relatif à la nomenclature des installations classées pour la protection de l'environnement) (1953, as amended) specifies that shellfish farms are entirely exempt from the procedure, whereas marine aquaculture facilities with a producing capacity over 5 tonnes of fish per year are subject to the classified installations regulations. Consequently, the described EIA process is only applicable to the latter.

        The Classified Installations system is another procedure established to deal with environmental concerns. The construction of facilities, which may cause nuisance to the neighbourhood or affect health, security, cultural and archaeological heritage, agriculture or the environment, is subject to the granting of an authorization or a declaration, depending on the significance of such effect. This procedure, managed by the Prefect, applies to both marine and inland aquaculture, and is regulated in Book V of the Environmental Code (L511 and L512) and Decree No.77-1133 implementing Law No.76-663 concerning classified installations for the protection of environment  (Décret No.77-1133 du 21 septembre 1977 modifié pris pour l'application de la loi No.76-663 du 19 juillet 1976 relative aux installations classées pour la protection de l'environnement) (1977, as amended).

        Decree No.53-578 establishing the categories of classified installations requires an authorization for the following activities:
        • Freshwater salmon farming, with a producing capacity over 10 tonnes/year.
        • Freshwater fish farming (excluding salmon farming and extensive pond aquaculture, with little or no feeding), with a producing capacity exceeding 20 tonnes/year.
        • Marine fish farming, with a producing capacity exceeding 20 tonnes/year.
        A simple declaration is required for:
        • Freshwater salmon farming, with a producing capacity over 500 kg/year, but below or equal to 10 tonnes/year.
        • Freshwater fish farming (excluding salmon farming and extensive pond aquaculture, with little or no feeding), with a producing capacity over 5 tonnes/year, but below or equal to 20 tonnes/year.
        • Marine fish farming, with a producing capacity over 5 tonnes/year, but below or equal to 20 tonnes/year.
        Operation
        Water and wastewater
        European water legislation concerning aquaculture includes Council Directive (EEC) No.78/659 on the Quality of Fresh Waters needing Protection or Improvement in order to Support Fish Life; Council Directive (EEC) No.79/923 on the Quality required of Shellfish Waters (79/923/EEC); and Parliament and Council Directive (EC) 2000/60 establishing a Framework for Community Action in the Field of Water Policy, all of which have been implemented in France.

        Since a few years, France is being targeted by several rulings of the European Court of Justice, concerning the implementation of the EU legislation on water pollution. These infringement proceedings mainly pertain to drinking and bathing water quality levels, urban wastewater treatment, pollution from nitrates and other dangerous substances. In order to fill this gap, France is now discussing a Draft Water Law in Parliament.

        As mentioned in the paragraph on access to water above, the main piece of French legislation governing water resources is Book II of the Environmental Code. Water Laws No.92-3 (Loi sur l’eau) (1992) and No.64-1245 (Loi relative au régime et à la répartition des eaux et à la lutte contre leur pollution) (1964) have basically been incorporated in the Code, as well as Law No.2004-338 implementing Directive (EC) 2000/60 (Loi No.2004-338 portant transposition de la directive 2000/60/CE du Parlement européen et du Conseil du 23 octobre 2000 établissant un cadre pour une politique communautaire dans le domaine de l'eau) (2004).

        Aquaculture water quality is regulated by several decrees and orders. Decree of August 20th 1939 concerning the salubrity of oysters, mussels and other shellfish   (Décret du 20 août 1939 relatif à la salubrité des huîtres, moules et autres coquillages) (1939, as amended) provides that the Director of Maritime Affairs (Directeur des affaires maritimes) is in charge of classifying littoral waters into salubrious and insalubrious zones, with regard to the production of shellfish. The European provisions on water quality to ensure fish and shellfish life are found in Decree No.91-1283 concerning the quality objectives of watercourses, parts of watercourses, canals, lakes or ponds and marine waters within the territorial zone  (Décret No.91-1283 relatif aux objectifs de qualité assignés aux cours d'eau, sections de cours d'eau, canaux, lacs ou étangs et aux eaux de la mer dans les limites territoriales) (1991), in particular Annexes I and II. The analysis and inspection methods concerning fish and shellfish water quality are established by Annexes III and IV to Order of December 26th 1991 implementing article 2 of Decree No.91-1283 concerning the quality objectives of watercourses, parts of watercourses, canals, lakes or ponds and marine waters within the territorial zone, and establishing the administrative system to inform the European Commission (Arrêté du 26 décembre 1991 portant application de l'article 2 du décret n° 91-1283 du 19 décembre 1991 relatif aux objectifs de qualité assignés aux cours d'eau, sections de cours d'eau, canaux, lacs, ou étangs et aux eaux de la mer dans les limites territoriales et portant modalités administratives d'information de la Commission des communautés européennes) (1991).

        The discharge of wastewater into marine waters or inland waterbodies is regulated by the authorization/ declaration system described in the Environmental Code (see paragraph on access to water above). Aquaculture effluents are not specifically regulated. However, fines are established for the discharge in salt waters of substances that may endanger the conservation or reproduction of marine mammals, fish, crustaceans, shellfish, molluscs or plants, or make them unfit for consumption.
        Fish movement
        The import and transit of animals in France, including aquatic animals, are regulated in Book II of the Rural Code and Order of July 19th 2002 establishing the health conditions for the import and transit, in the metropolitan territory and in the overseas departments, of live animals and some of their products as defined in article L 236-1 of the Rural Code  (Arrêté 19 juillet 2002 fixant les conditions sanitaires pour l'importation et le transit, sur le territoire métropolitain et dans les départements d'outre-mer, des animaux vivants et de certains de leurs produits visés à l'article L. 236-1 du Code Rural) (2002).

        The import and transit of animals are subject to the presentation of a health certificate or an accompanying document. Annexes 24 and 25 to the Order of July 19th 2002 provide for specific health certificates for aquatic species. The certificate must provide the following details:
        • Third country of import.
        • Issuing authority.
        • Number of CITIES Export permit, when required.
        • Identification of animals.
        • Farming facility of origin.
        • Means of transport.
        • Name and address of exporter.
        • Name and address of importer.
        • Name and address of first destination facilities.
        • Declaration of the official veterinary doctor on health conditions.
        • Name and signature of the official veterinary doctor.
        Health certificates for the import and transit of fish species and their gametes, molluscs and their gametes, and crustaceans originating from third countries and intended for animal experimentation facilities, specialized farming facilities, supply and sales facilities, have a duration of ten days, whereas health certificates for the import and transit of fish species, molluscs, their gametes, and crustaceans (excluding marine molluscs and crustaceans), originating from third countries and intended for aquaculture facilities, are only valid for eight days.

        The manager of the farm where live fish and their gametes, live molluscs and their gametes, and crustaceans are imported or kept after import must apply for an authorization (demande d'agrément) of the Prefect. Annex 28 to the Order of July 19th 2002 details the information that must be provided with the application (conditions d'agrément). The authorization lasts five years and is renewable.

        General provisions on the import and export of animals are found in the Rural Code, Book II, Title III, Chapter VI (L236). For export within the EU, live animals must be produced in approved zones, or in approved farms operating in non-approved zones. The identification of approved zones and approved farms, made by the Ministry of Agriculture, must be communicated to the European Commission with the supporting documentation. Fish movement is regulated accordingly. In particular, the list of approved fish farms in France, located in a non-approved zone as regards IHN (Infectious Haematopoietic Necrosis) and VHS (Viral Haemorragic Septicaemia), is established in Commission Decision (EC) No.473/1995, as amended  . The transport of aquatic species, except marine molluscs and crustaceans is specifically regulated by Order of April 10th, 1997 establishing the health policy applicable to the marketing of aquaculture animals and products  (Arrêté du 10 avril 1997 relatif aux conditions de police sanitaire régissant la mise sur le marché d'animaux et de produits d'aquaculture) (1997, as amended). A transport document or zoosanitary certificate is necessary for the movement of aquaculture animals. The Order provides for a different form to be filled according to the type of animal:
        1. Aquaculture animals that are prone to certain diseases (Annex I, list II of the Order), intended for an approved zone.
        2. Aquaculture animals that are prone to certain diseases (Annex I, list II of the Order), intended for an approved farm.
        3. Aquaculture animals that are not prone to said diseases, intended for an approved farm or zone.
        4. Wild fish and crustaceans, intended for an approved farm or zone.
        5. IHN- and VHS-prone fish species, between non approved zones within the EU.
        6. Live cultured fish specie, between zones infected by the same disease, within the EU.
        Decree of August 20th, 1939 concerning the salubrity of oysters, mussels and other shellfish species  (Décret du 20 août 1939 relatif à la salubrité des huîtres, moules et autres coquillages) (1939, as amended) details the conditions to be met for the transport of shellfish. Parcels must bear a label, issued by the Scientific and Technical Office of Maritime Fisheries (Office scientifique et technique des pêches maritimes) attesting the healthiness of their content. At Community level, aquatic animals import is regulated by:The import of aquaculture animals and products from third countries is only authorized from countries listed in Commission Decision (EC) No.296/1997, as amended  .
        Disease control
        As a general issue, animal disease control is covered by Book II of the Rural Code. Regulations are issued by the Minister of Agriculture, jointly with the Minister of Finance (Ministre de l'économie et des finances). A National Veterinary Commission (Commission Nationale Vétérinaire) is vested with advisory powers in matters related to animal health.

        Aquatic animals' health is regulated by Order of April 10th, 1997 establishing health policy conditions for the marketing of aquaculture animals and products (as amended by Order of March 1st 2000 and Order of September 30th 2002)  . Its provisions, however, do not apply to marine molluscs and crustaceans. The Order regulates the marketing, sales and transport of aquaculture animals, and sets the requirements of approved zones and farms in coastal and riparian areas, the number and purpose of periodic inspections, and the measures to be taken in case of a disease outbreak.

        Decree of August 20th, 1939 concerning the salubrity of oysters, mussels and other shellfish  species makes provisions on the production, transport and sale of shellfish. The classification of coastal areas in salubrious and insalubrious zones is made by decision of the Director of Maritime Affairs of the Ministry of Transport, as well as the list of farms that are allowed to sell shellfish for direct consumption. Shellfish produced in farms that are not included in the list must go through a purification process, prior to sale.

        At European level, this matter is regulated by Directive (EC) No.53/1993 on Minimum Community Measures against certain Fish Diseases – as amended by Directive (EC) No.27/2000  , and by Directive (EC) No.70/1995 establishing Minimum Measures against some Bivalve Mollusc Diseases  . Also relevant is Council Directive (EEC) No.667/1990, making Sanitary Provisions for the Disposal, Processing and Placing on the Market of Waste of Animal Origin and for the Protection against Pathogenic Agents of Feedstuffs of Animal Origin or Fish-Based Feedstuffs and amending Directive (EEC) No.425/1990  .
        Drugs
        The use of chemicals and veterinary drugs in general, including in aquaculture, is mainly regulated at Community level, by several directives and regulations, and in particular by Council Regulation (EEC) No. 2377/1990 laying down a Community Procedure for the Establishment of Maximum Residue Limits (MRLs) of Veterinary Medicinal Products in Foodstuffs of Animal Origin. This Regulation provides the list of drugs for which a final or temporary MRL has been determined (Annexes I and III) and the list of drugs that do not require an MRL either because they are not toxic for human health or because their use is forbidden (Annexes II and IV). To include a new veterinary drug in the MRL list, pharmaceutical companies must file an application with the Commission, providing the relevant documentation to allow the Committee on Veterinary Medicinal Products to assess the marketing of the concerned product. The actual use of approved drugs is then subject to national regulations.

        In France, provisions regulating the preparation, marketing and use of veterinary drugs are gathered in Book I, Title IV of the Public Health Code  (Code de la Santé Publique – L5141). No specific provisions are made for the use of drugs in aquaculture. The marketing of veterinary drugs by pharmaceutical companies must be authorized by the French Agency for Health Security of Food Products (Agence française de la sécurité des aliments – AFSSA) or by the European Commission, according to the procedures established by Council Regulation (EEC) No.2309/1993 laying down Community Procedures for the Authorization and Supervision of Medicinal Products for Human and Veterinary Use and establishing a European Agency for the Evaluation of Medicinal Products. A National Agency for Veterinary Drugs (Agence nationale du médicament vétérinaire) operates within the AFSSA.

        Other EU Directives on Veterinary Drugs are Directives No.81/851/CEE, No.81/852/CEE, No.87/20/CEE and No.90/676/CEE. Concerning the use of chemicals in aquaculture, it is worth reminding that Council Regulation (EC) No.2375/2001, amending Commission Regulation (EC) No.466/2001 setting Maximum Levels for Certain Contaminants in Foodstuffs, introduces maximum levels for dioxins in fish products.
        Feed
        At national level, the matter is regulated in Book II, Title III, Chapter V of the Rural Code (L235), which empowers the Ministers of Agriculture and Health to establish the list of products and substances that are allowed in the preparation of animal feed. No specific provisions were found on aquaculture feedstuff.

        Applicable legislation at Community level includes Directives 2001/102/EC, 2002/32/EC, 2003/57/EC and 2003/100/EC concerning Undesirable Substances and Products in Animal Feed.
        Food safety
        The main public body empowered with advisory functions in food safety matters is the French Agency for Health Security of Food Products – AFSSA. The functioning of AFSSA is regulated in the Public Health Code   (Part I, Book III, Title II, Chapter III).

        Book II of the Rural Code makes provisions on certain general food safety issues, such as traceability and health inspections. Furthermore, processing plants producing animal products intended for human consumption (including fish products) must be granted a health authorization (agrément sanitaire) from the administrative authority, before marketing such products. Health requirements, compliance checks and certification are established by order of the Minister of Agriculture.

        Concerning aquaculture, some provisions on the quality of fish and shellfish products before marketing are made by Order of April 10th, 1997 establishing the health policy applicable to the marketing of aquaculture animals and products and Decree of August 20th, 1939 concerning the salubrity of oysters, mussels and other shellfish species.

        At Community level, beyond the specific provisions of Council Directive No.492/1991 laying down the health conditions for the production and the placing on the market of live bivalve molluscs, and Council Directive 91/493/EEC of 22 July 1991 laying down the health conditions for the production and the placing on the market of fishery products  , and Commission Regulation (EC) No.2065/2001 laying down detailed rules for the application of Council Regulation (EC) No.104/2000 as regards informing consumers about fishery and aquaculture products  , applicable legislation includes Directives No.93/43/EEC and No.96/3/EEC on Food Hygiene, and Directives 89/395/CEE and 89/396/CEE concerning the Labelling, Packaging and Advertising of Foodstuffs.
        Miscellaneous
        Aquaculture investment 
        Aquaculture investment receives financial support from the European Union, especially through capital grant contributions within the framework of structural funds. The FIFG – Financial Instrument for Fisheries Guidance (IFOP: Instrument Financier d'Orientation de la Pêche) 2000–2006 operates under the co-financing principle and is regulated by Council Regulation (EC) No.2792/1999 laying down the Detailed Rules and Arrangements regarding Community Structural Assistance in the Fisheries Sector.

        The Regulation provides that Member States may take measures to encourage capital investment in aquaculture and in the processing of aquaculture products and further states that, in general, financial assistance from the FIFG may be granted only for projects which:
        • Contribute to lasting economic benefits from the structural improvement.
        • Offer an adequate guarantee of technical and economic viability.
        • Avoid counterproductive effects, particularly the risk of creating surplus production capacity.
        With regard to aquaculture, investments in works concerning the installation or improvement of water circulation shall be eligible.
        References
        Legislation

        FRANCE

        Environmental Code (Code de l’Environnement)
        Decree No.53-578 establishing the categories of classified installations (Décret n° 53-578 du 20 mai 1953 modifié relatif à la nomenclature des installations classées pour la protection de l'environnement) (1953, as amended)
        Decree No.77-1133 implementing Law No.76-663 concerning classified installations for the protection of environment (Décret No.77-1133 du 21 septembre 1977 modifié pris pour l'application de la loi No.76-663 du 19 juillet 1976 relative aux installations classées pour la protection de l'environnement) (1977, as amended)
        Decree No.77-1141 implementing article 2 of Law No.76-269 concerning the protection of nature (Décret No.77-1141 pris pour l'application de l'article 2 de la loi No.76-269 du 10 juillet 1976 relative à la protection de la nature) (1977, as amended)
        Rural Code (Code Rural)
        Order of April 10th, 1997 establishing the health policy applicable to the marketing of aquaculture animals and products (Arrêté du 10 avril 1997 relatif aux conditions de police sanitaire régissant la mise sur le marché d'animaux et de produits d'aquaculture) (1997, as amended by Order of March 1st, 2000 and Order of September 30th, 2002)
        Order of July 19th 2002 establishing the health conditions for the import and transit, in the metropolitan territory and in the overseas departments, of live animals and some of their products as defined in article L 236-1 of the Rural Code (Arrêté 19 juillet 2002 fixant les conditions sanitaires pour l'importation et le transit, sur le territoire métropolitain et dans les départements d'outre-mer, des animaux vivants et de certains de leurs produits visés à l'article L. 236-1 du Code Rural) (2002)
        Public Health Code (Code de la Santé Publique)
        Draft Law on Water (Projet de loi sur l’eau et les milieux aquatiques) (2005)
        Decree January 9th, 1852 on Maritime Fisheries Decree January 9th, 1852 on Maritime Fisheries (Décret du 9 janvier 1852 - Décret sur l'exercice de la pêche maritime) (1852, as amended)
        Decree of August 20th 1939 concerning the salubrity of oysters, mussels and other shellfish (Décret du 20 août 1939 relatif à la salubrité des huîtres, moules et autres coquillages) (1939, as amended)
        Decree No.85-453 implementing Law No.83-630 concerning the democratization of public enquiries and the protection of the environment (Décret No.85-453 pris pour l'application de la loi n° 83-630 du 12 juillet 1983 relative à la démocratisation des enquêtes publiques et à la protection de l'environnement) (1985, as amended)
        Decree No.91-1283 concerning the quality objectives of watercourses, parts of watercourses, canals, lakes or ponds and marine waters within the territorial zone (Décret No.91-1283 relatif aux objectifs de qualité assignés aux cours d'eau, sections de cours d'eau, canaux, lacs ou étangs et aux eaux de la mer dans les limites territoriales) (1991)
        Order of December 26th 1991 implementing article 2 of Decree No.91-1283 concerning the quality objectives of watercourses, parts of watercourses, canals, lakes or ponds and marine waters within the territorial zone, and establishing the administrative system to inform the European Commission (Arrêté du 26 décembre 1991 portant application de l'article 2 du décret n° 91-1283 du 19 décembre 1991 relatif aux objectifs de qualité assignés aux cours d'eau, sections de cours d'eau, canaux, lacs, ou étangs et aux eaux de la mer dans les limites territoriales et portant modalités administratives d'information de la Commission des communautés européennes) (1991)
        Decree No.98-1060 (Décret No.98-1060 relatif au Conseil Supérieur d'Orientation des Politiques Halieutique, Aquacole et Halioalimentaire) (1998)
        Decree No.2002-897 concerning the functions of the Minister of Agriculture, Food, Fisheries and Rural Affairs (Décret No.2002-897 relatif aux attributions du Ministre de l'agriculture, de l'alimentation, de la pêche et des affaires rurales) (2002)
        Decree No.2004-320 concerning the functions of the Minister of Infrastructure, Transport, Land Use, Tourism and the Sea (Décret No.2004-320 du 8 avril 2004 relatif aux attributions du Ministre de l'équipement, des transports, de l'aménagement du territoire, du tourisme et de la mer) (2004)
        Law No.42-427 concerning Maritime Navigation Titles (Loi No.42-427 relative aux titres de navigation maritime) (1942, as amended)
        Law No.91-411 concerning the interprofessional organization of marine fisheries and aquaculture, and the organization of shellfish culture (Loi No.91-411 du 2 mai 1991 relative à l'organisation interprofessionnelle des pêches maritimes et des élevages marins et à l'organisation de la conchyliculture) (1991)
        Decree No.91-1276 regulating the functioning of interprofessional shellfish culture organizations (Décret No.91-1276 du 19 décembre 1991 fixant les modalités d'organisation et de fonctionnement des organismes interprofessionnels de la conchyliculture) (1991)
        Decree No.92-335 regulating the functioning of the National Committee for Maritime Fisheries and Marine Aquaculture, as well as the Regional and Local Committees for Maritime Fisheries and Marine Aquaculture (Décret No.92-335 du 30 mars 1992 fixant les règles d’organisation et de fonctionnement du Comité national des pêches maritimes et des élevages marins, ainsi que des comités régionaux et locaux des pêches maritimes et des élevages marins) (1992)
        Law No.97-1051 on Maritime Fisheries and Mariculture Law No.97-1051 on Maritime Fisheries and Mariculture (Loi 97-1051 d’Orientation sur la Pêche Maritime et sur les Cultures Marines) (1997)


        EUROPE



        SOFT LAW

        Related resources
        Dosdat, A. & de la Pomelie, C. 2000. Regulation and monitoring of marine aquaculture in France. Journal of Applied Ichtiology, 16 (2000), pp.182-186
        Duret, J. 1999. Relations entre aquaculture et environnement: Cas de la France. Aquaculture planning in Mediterranean countries - Planification de l'aquaculture dans les pays méditerranéens. Zaragoza: CIHEAM-IAMZ, 1999. pp. 45-54: 1 ill. 3 tables. 11 ref. (Cahiers Options Méditerranéennes; v. 43), Workshop of the CIHEAM Network on Socio-economic and Legal Aspects of Aquaculture in the Mediterranean (SELAM), 1998/03/12-14, Tangiers (Morocco)
        Conservatory of Coastal Areas and Lake Shores (Conservatoire de l'espace littoral et des rivages lacustres)
        French Agency for Health Security of Food Products (Agence française de la sécurité des aliments – AFSSA)
        French Research Institute for Exploitation of the Sea (Institut français de recherche pour l'exploitation de la mer – IFREMER)
        Interprofessional Committee for Aquaculture Products (Comité Interprofessionnel des Produits de l'Aquaculture – CIPA)
        Ministry of Ecology and Sustainable Development (Ministère de l’Écologie et du Développement Durable)
        National Agency for Veterinary Drugs (Agence nationale du médicament vétérinaire)
        National Committee for Shellfish Culture (Comité National de la Conchyliculture – CNC)
        National Committee for Maritime Fisheries and Marine Aquaculture (Comité National des Pêches Maritimes et des Elevages Marins – CNPMEM)
        National Interprofessional Office for Marine and Aquaculture Products (Office national interprofessionnel des produits de la mer et de l'aquaculture – OFIMER)
        National Fisheries Association – Draft Water Law, Association Fisheries Reform(Union Nationale Pêche – Projet de Loi sur l'Eau et les Milieux Aquatiques, Réforme de la Pêche Associative)


        EUROPE

        Bates, R. 1999. EU requirements for aquaculture planning in the member states. Aquaculture planning in Mediterranean countries – Planification de l'aquaculture dans les pays méditerranéens - Zaragoza: CIHEAM-IAMZ, 1999. p. 45-54: 1 ill. 3 tables. 11 ref. (Cahiers Options Méditerranéennes; v. 43), Workshop of the CIHEAM Network on Socio-economic and Legal Aspects of Aquaculture in the Mediterranean (SELAM), 1998/03/12-14, Tangiers (Morocco)
        Related links
        Country profiles: France
         
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