The process of harmonisation is necessary in order to improve consistency and efficiency of our standards. It aims to deliver a higher level of consistency across the current standards, provide greater clarity to farmers, auditors and other external stakeholders, and will allow us to expand our reach and impact in a more effective and efficient manner.

Expected completion: 2018
Contact person: Michiel Fransen

The aligned standard

First public consultation

The ASC is seeking stakeholder feedback on the first draft of a proposed Core Standard of indicators. This document harmonises Principles, Rationale, Criteria and Indicators from the 7 current ASC species standards of Salmon, Trout, Pangasius, Tilapia, Shrimp, bivalves, abalone (the draft seriola/cobia standard is also being considered and will be included when finalised). Agreeing a common set of indicators is the first step (Phase 1) in creating a Core Standard that will lead to harmonisation of ASC’s standards. Once these are agreed then the second step is to agree harmonised applicability, requirements and methods that will finalise the Core Standard and species specific annexes. The species specific annexes will set out requirements for a given species or species group where harmonisation cannot be achieved.

A key has been provided that shows how the principles and indicators from each of the 7 current ASC species specific standards have been harmonised into the Core Standard. The purpose of grouping these indicators is to rationalise and simplify the standards making them common wherever possible. This of course means that some detail is lost when multiple indicators across multiple standards is merged into one Core indicator. And although detail in the description may be lost the rigour of the standard, its intent and the requirement level is not changed at all at this stage. All the requirements, applicability, methods remain the same for the species and these will be discussed during consultation Phase 2. 

Timelines and important dates


  • Project start up
  • Public consultation – Terms of reference (see below)
  • Public consultation – 1st draft (see below)
    19 August – 19 October 2016
  • Public consultation – 2nd draft (see below)
    19 March – 19 May 2018
  • Release
    End 2018 (phase 1)


Initial public consultation
For documents related to the initial consultation, see Public consultation I below.

Governance documents
For governance and supporting documents, see Governance below. 


Aligned standard documentation

Public consultation I

Consultation documents

There are currently no documents open to public consultation.

  • Closed - Public consultation on the first draft of the ASC Harmonised Standard 19 August - 19 October 2016

Comments from the first alignment consultation from 16 August

The consultation package includes:

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