FAO European Inland Fisheries Advisory Commission

EIFAC Code of Practice for Recreational Fisheries


Rome 2008


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ISBN 978-92-5-106078-0

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Upon request by the European Inland Fisheries Advisory Commission (EIFAC), the present Code of Practice (CoP) for Recreational Fisheries has been prepared by R. Arlinghaus (Leibniz-Institute of Freshwater Ecology and Inland Fisheries and Humboldt-University of Berlin, Germany), with the collaboration of I. Cowx (International Fisheries Institute, University of Hull, United Kingdom) and R. van Anrooy (FAO), on the basis of comments and suggestions received on a draft CoP at a workshop held on 5 and 6 November 2007 in Bilthoven, the Netherlands. Selected stakeholders from academia, national and international fisheries bodies, fisheries and non-fisheries governmental and non-governmental organizations (NGOs) and specific recreational fisheries stakeholders were invited to this workshop and 28 delegates attended.

The following persons deserve special credits for their feedback on the various stages of a draft CoP: T. Aarts (the Netherlands), Z. Adamek (Czech Republic), A. Almodovár (Spain), A. Alriksson (Sweden), D. Beard (United States of America), F. Bloot (the Netherlands), A. Bonzon (General Fisheries Commission for the Mediterranean), B. Breton (France), B. Broughton (United Kingdom), J. Caffrey (Ireland), S. Cooke and his students (Canada), K. Daedlow (Germany), C. DeYoung (FAO), D. Dunkley (Scotland), A. Gordoa (Spain), R. Grainger (FAO), E. Graupera (Spain), J. Harrison (Australia), P. Hickley (United Kingdom), C. Horton (United States of America), A. Jagsch (Austria), B. Johnson (United States of America), J. Kappel (the Netherlands, Belgium), R. Kramer (United States of America), N. Leonard (United States of America), T. Meinelt (Germany), G. Nicola (Spain), J-F Pulvenis de Séligny (FAO), G. Rasmussen (Denmark), E. Roth (Denmark), R. Safner (Croatia), A. Schwab (Switzerland), E. Staub (Switzerland), F. Szalay (Hungary), W. Taylor (United States of America), A.-L. Toivonen (Finland), L. Váradi (Hungary), K. Vlietinick (Belgium), S. Vonk (the Netherlands), H. Watanabe (FAO Rome) and R. Welcomme (United Kingdom).

In finalizing this document, due consideration was given to additional comments and suggestions received and to related expert views voiced at major international meetings, in publications or personally to R. Arlinghaus. Particular credit goes to A. Rothuis of the Dutch Ministry of Agriculture, Nature and Food Quality and to F. Bloot of the Dutch Recreational Fishing Association for their financial and logistic support in hosting the workshop, as well as to the Irish Fisheries Board - particularly J. Caffrey - for partial funding of this project. Funding was also provided through the Adaptfish-project funded by the Gottfried-Wilhelm-Leibniz-Community (Germany) through a grant to R. Arlinghaus.

Note to the readership of the EIFAC Occasional Paper:

The English version of the EIFAC Code of Practice for Recreational Fisheries presented in this document was officially endorsed by the twenty-fifth session of EIFAC. Although reviewed by recreational fisheries stakeholders in France, the French text of the Code, presented here as an Annex, should not be treated as the official French version but should be considered simply as a translation.


FAO European Inland Fisheries Advisory Commission.
EIFAC Code of Practice for Recreational Fisheries.
EIFAC Occasional Paper. No. 42. Rome, FAO. 2008. 45p.


The EIFAC Code of Practice for Recreational Fisheries was prepared in 2007 by the European Inland Fisheries Advisory Commission (EIFAC) Working Party on Recreational Fisheries, involving experts and related stakeholders from Europe, North-America and Oceania. The EIFAC Code of Practice for Recreational Fisheries (CoP) is intended to complement and extend the FAO Code of Conduct for Responsible Fisheries. It serves as the core document that describes the minimum standards of environmentally-friendly, ethically-appropriate and – depending on local situations – sociallyacceptable recreational fishing and its management. The CoP contains the following articles: Nature and scope of the Code, Objectives, Implementation and updating, General principles, Environmental stewardship and ethics, Policy and institutional frameworks, Compliance and enforcement, Recreational fishing practices, Fish welfare, Stakeholder interactions, Management, Research, and Awareness, education and training. The CoP was endorsed by the twenty-fifth session of the European Inland Fisheries Advisory Commission, held in Antalya, Turkey, from 21 to 28 May 2008. Currently, a number of EIFAC member countries are actively promoting and disseminating this EIFAC Code of Practice for Recreational Fisheries and it is expected that the Code will form the basis for international guidelines.


Preparation of this document



ARTICLE 1 - Nature and scope

ARTICLE 2 - Objectives

ARTICLE 3 - Implementation and updating

ARTICLE 4 - General principles

ARTICLE 5 Environmental stewardship and ethics

ARTICLE 6 Policy and institutional frameworks

ARTICLE 7 Compliance and enforcement

ARTICLE 8 Recreational fishing practices

ARTICLE 9 Fish welfare

ARTICLE 10 Stakeholder interactions

ARTICLE 11 Management

ARTICLE 12 Research

ARTICLE 13 Awareness, education and training

ANNEX: Code d’usages de la CECPI pour les pęches de loisir (traduction non officielle/non official translation)

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