General Fisheries Commission for the Mediterranean - GFCM

Aquatic food in the Mediterranean and the Black Sea: From farm to fork


The GFCM teams up with the Institut Paul Bocuse Research Center and with Mediterranean and Black Sea producers to create a guide highlighting the journey of aquaculture species in the region from farm to fork. 

Farmed aquatic foods are a cultural and nutritional pillar of the Mediterranean and the Black Sea. However, despite the significance of aquaculture – which produces 52 percent of the fish available for human consumption globally – the available products and their origin, nutritional value and benefits are widely unknown to communities in the region.  

To effectively tell the farm to fork story of farmed aquatic foods in the region, the General Fisheries Commission for the Mediterranean (GFCM) is working with aquaculture producers, producer associations and the Institut Paul Bocuse Research Center to create a guide on farmed aquatic species. This collaboration, officially launched today at the Aquafarm event in Pordenone, will showcase cutting-edge production techniques and innovative recipes created by local, young chefs for 12 species from across the region. 


In line with the objective of the GFCM 2030 Strategy for sustainable fisheries and aquaculture in the Mediterranean and the Black Sea to improve the perception of the aquaculture sector and its products, and within the framework of the International Year of Artisanal Fisheries and Aquaculture (IYAFA 2022), this guide will bring together major stakeholders in the sector, emphasizing the complementary relationship between producers, chefs and consumers to ensure the sustainable development of aquaculture and its contribution to sustainable food systems. A special focus will be given to young people in the region, highlighting the importance of knowledge sharing and know-how with the younger generation. 

©Trabzon Central Fisheries Research Institute, ©TTF, ©Nicolas Villion

The Institute Paul Bocuse Research Center and the GFCM work hand in hand to promote healthy, tasty and responsible aquatic food for all. Our objective in this project is to connect aquaculture producers from the Mediterranean and the Black Sea with the consumers by creating recipes that highlight iconic farmed aquatic food from the region”, said Julien Ferretti, Chef and Culinary Project Leader for R&D of the Institut Paul Bocuse Research Center. 

  1. The farmed aquatic foods guide will contain a wealth of information on the: 
  2. Production of species in the region, highlighting success stories from local producers. 
  3. Culinary history of select species that are farmed in a sustainable way, as well as their cultural value, traditional processing and consumption. 
  4. Nutritional value of aquatic foods in a healthy and balanced diet, as well as specific information related to each species. 
  5. Best ingredients pairings based on their sensorial characteristics and their significance in region’s culinary culture. 
  6. Innovative and healthy recipes highlighting the sensorial and culinary characteristics of each farmed aquatic species.  

“The Guide on farmed aquatic species presents a unique opportunity to showcase the best aquaculture products in the Mediterranean and Black Sea region and the farmers who are dedicated to their production. The aquaculture sector is well placed to drive the transition towards clean, climate-proof and sustainable activities that tread lightly on the marine environment”, said Lara Barazi, President of the Federation of European Aquaculture Producers (FEAP). 

This guide will support the implementation of the GFCM 2030 Strategy and highlight the importance of educating consumers about the environmental, health and nutritional benefits of farmed aquatic foods as a reliable and resilient contribution to food security in the region. 

About the Institut Paul Bocuse Research Center: 

The Institut Paul Bocuse Research Center is a non-profit research organization conducting multidisciplinary works in the food and hospitality industries. Working alongside high-level international academics, national and global companies, and the public sector, the Center fuses research and the culinary arts to develop scientific projects and innovations in order to promote tasty, healthy and sustainable diets for all. To fulfill its mission, the Center develops and applies original methodologies to study cooking and eating behaviours in real life situations and makes a strong effort to transfer the gained scientific knowledge to the industry, both food and food service, to contribute to the well-being of the population. By combining social sciences, life sciences and gastronomic sciences, the research center brings an innovative perspective to the industry and to its partners from around the world.