The robust standards are the result of the Aquaculture Dialogues, a set of multi-stakeholder round-tables that brought together more than 2,000 aquaculture stakeholders. To find out how the standards were developed see Creation of our initial standards.

The current eleven ASC standards cover 17 species groups [abalone; bivalves (clams, mussels, oyster, scallop); flatfish; freshwater trout; pangasius; salmon; seabass, seabream, meagre; seriola and cobia; shrimp; tilapia; tropical marine finfish] and there is also a joint ASC-MSC standard for seaweed.



The ASC standards focus on both the environmental and social impact of farming

  • Environmentally

farms must show that they actively minimise their impact on the surrounding natural environment. This extends to careful management of the fish health and resources.

  • Socially

farms must be a good and conscientious neighbour; that means operating their farm in a socially responsible manner, caring for their employees and working with the local community.

Credible standards

Our standards for responsible aquaculture are based on best practices and sound science. The measurable, metric- and performance-based standards apply globally to farming systems covering a range of locations, types and scales of operations.

To ensure a credible, inclusive and transparent standard setting process the standards were developed in line with the United Nations Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) guidelines and ISEAL’s Codes of Good Practice. Find out more about how we develop standards on our Programme Improvements page.

For all inquiries and feedback on any of the ASC standards or to request a hard copy of public summaries, standards or other related materials, please contact the Standards and Science Team at

What we do


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