The 60-day public comment period for the Best Aquaculture Practices (BAP) biosecurity area management standards, released in late November, has been extended by 14 days, the Global Aquaculture Alliance has announced.
The new deadline to submit comments is Feb. 12, 2017.
The new standards focus primarily on the prevention and control of pathogenic organisms and the diseases they cause through the implementation of cohesive area-wide management.
The standards apply to groups of cooperating farms that nurture a collective, risk-mitigating model of good governance across a defined aquaculture area. They are not species-specific and cover all production methods, including flow-through, partial exchange, and closed or recirculating water systems operated in ponds, cages, net pens, tanks, raceways or closed-containment vessels.
Although participating farms are not required to be certified under BAP or other certification program, all farms within the biosecurity area must apply good husbandry and management practices in a verifiable manner under a common biosecurity management system.
The standards were prepared by the BAP biosecurity area management technical committee, which is chaired by Peter Marshall of RS Standards, founder and former CEO of Global Trust Certification.
The BAP Standards Oversight Committee — whose members represent a balance of stakeholders from industry, NGOs and academia — recommended refinements to the standards before approving them for release.
All comments received during the public comment period are carefully considered for inclusion in the final draft. All properly submitted comments are acknowledged.
“All stakeholders are encouraged to participate in this public comment exercise so that the finished standards can benefit from the most broad-based input possible,” said BAP Standards Coordinator Dan Lee.
A division of the Global Aquaculture Alliance, Best Aquaculture Practices is an international certification program based on achievable, science-based and continuously improved global performance standards for the entire aquaculture supply chain — farms, hatcheries, processing plants and feed mills — that assure healthful foods produced through environmentally and socially responsible means.