HS Codes for Fish and Fish Products


The classification of products is a key element in international trade. The Harmonized System (HS) of the World Customs Organization (WCO) provides an internationally recognised product classification system. Governments, industry, international organizations, academia, and market analysts use the HS codes to classify commodities, including fisheries and aquaculture products. The HS codes support international trade regarding trade policies, import duties, statistical analysis, negotiations of trade agreements, and other associated issues directly influencing trade flows of fisheries and aquaculture products. Also, many countries use the HS codes at a national level for taxation, national policies, and other related aspects. In addition, the HS allows countries to implement national control of specific products covered by international conventions or agreements, such as the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora (CITES), which includes fish species. Fisheries and aquaculture products are strongly associated with international trade. More than 200 countries report some fish trading activity. Furthermore, many fisheries and aquaculture products usually have long value chains. A given fish may be harvested in one country, processed in another, and consumed in yet another. It is therefore that fish is often one of the most complex commodities to classify, with several specificities. There is a multiplicity of species and treatments, which create an intricate set of different layers covering different products and make it especially difficult to classify fisheries and aquaculture products. The Handbook presents all possible classifications for fisheries and aquaculture products by species, with a full description of each HS code to facilitate its use. It is divided into two parts, and includes products classified in the following HS chapters:




Fish and crustaceans, molluscs and other aquatic invertebrates


Products of fish, crustaceans, molluscs and other aquatic invertebrates, not elsewhere specified or included; dead animals of Chapter 3, unfit for human consumption


Seaweed and other algae




Fats and oils and their fractions of fish and marine mammals; prepared edible fats


Preparations of fish, crustaceans, molluscs or other aquatic invertebrates; caviar and caviar substitutes


Flours, meals and pellets of fish, crustaceans, molluscs or other aquatic invertebrates, unfit for human consumption; greaves

The first part of the Handbook presents all the species listed in those chapters, with commodity codes for all possible classifications of their products and treatments. The species are listed in alphabetical order and divided by groups based on their phyla (fish, crustaceans, molluscs or other aquatic invertebrates). The second part lists all HS codes for fisheries and aquaculture products with an exhaustive description of each code. They are listed in the order they appear in the HS and are particularly useful to search by commodity code. This exhaustive description avoids the use of generic terms, such as “other”, to provide a comprehensive description of the product, including all possible exceptions. The Handbook is an auxiliary tool to facilitate classification and enhance greater understanding of the HS from the angle of fisheries and aquaculture products. It does not modify the structure of the HS nor the species grouping. With this publication, FAO contributes disseminating an essential tool managed by WCO, and supports a better understanding of fisheries and aquaculture products classification.

Please e-mail the GLOBEFISH team for any additional information at  [email protected]