FAO in Georgia

Advancing Food Safety in the Aquaculture Sector through EU and FAO Support


From July 31 to August 4, 2023, through the support of the European Union (EU) under ENPARD IV, an international Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO) Expert Metin Ilemin held training modules on safe and sustainable pisciculture, with a focus on animal health. The educational programme was attended by the employees of the National Food Agency of Georgia (NFA), the association of aquaculture producers, private veterinarians, and FAO staff. The trainings were held in Tbilisi and Gori to support Georgia’s public and private sectors in adapting to the new food safety standards and the upcoming legislation on animal health.

The “from farm to table” approach and reducing the use of veterinary products in pisciculture were among the key training topics, along with other important themes, such as site design and construction of fish farms, aquatic organism health management, feeds and feed management, biosecurity, and antimicrobial resistance.

While the theoretical parts of the educational modules were held in Tbilisi, the practical training sessions took place on 2 and 4 August in a fish farm in the Akhaldaba village. In total, 18 participants attended the five-day training modules and obtained relevant knowledge on aquaculture, food safety and animal health.

“Under its ENPARD IV Programme, the EU is supporting the advancement of food safety in Georgia, which is a path toward ensuring that the country’s consumers have better access to higher-quality agricultural goods, which are also more competitive on national and international markets. The aquaculture sector, with its potential and opportunities for development, can become a great source for economic growth. Organised by FAO, under ENPARD IV, the aquaculture training module for competent authorities, private veterinarians, and the farmers themselves, is indeed a great way to support Georgia’s aquaculture sector in realising its potential and opportunities, as the knowledge of the best practices in the sector is essential in doing so,” said Dr. Ketevan Khutsishvili, Programme Manager for Emergency Management, Civil Protection, Rural Development, and Intellectual Property Delegation of the European Union to Georgia.

“We see a lot of opportunities in the aquaculture sector in Georgia, and it can be an important economic incentive for small producers in mountainous areas. We have supported the Ministry of Environmental Protection and Agriculture in approving the Aquaculture law in 2018, and the Aquaculture Strategy will be approved very soon. Now, through these trainings, we provide technical knowledge to farmers, aquaculture associations and the staff of the state institutions to implement and comply with the EU’s food safety standards and the upcoming national legislation on animal health for the aquaculture sector to reach its full potential” stated Javier Sanz Alvarez, FAO Programme Coordinator.


As a complement to these pieces of training, the FAO international expert, through the support of the EU, will hold additional training on food safety and animal health in aquaculture for NFA and the Revenue Service (RS) staff. Similarly, the two-day educational module aims at supporting the country in adapting to the new food safety standards, this time, in the aquaculture sector.

Since the beginning of the ENPARD IV in 2022, FAO has held training sessions for 2 200 vegetable producers, dairy farmers, and beekeepers from different regions of Georgia. Soon, the Organization will also start implementing educational modules for Georgian aquaculture producers.


The European Union supports rural development in Georgia through its ENPARD Programme. Aiming to reduce rural poverty, ENPARD has been implemented since 2013. The Programme started by supporting the development of national agriculture potential. Afterwards, it concentrated also on creating economic opportunities for rural populations in Georgia. Since 2021, the Programme is also working on improving food safety in the country, with the support of FAO and the Czech Development Agency as the main implementers of this food safety component under ENPARD IV.