NAA Recommends Farmer Participation in 2019-20 Regulatory Cost Analysis

The National Aquaculture Association (NAA) strongly recommends that the U.S. aquaculture community respond positively to requests by a multi-university research team to participate in the regulatory cost impact analysis being conducted during the fall/winter 2019-20.

The research team from Virginia Polytechnic University, University of Florida, and Mississippi State University are launching a new project to analyze aquaculture regulatory costs. Specific project objectives include:

To measure the economic effect of regulatory compliance costs on catfish, Atlantic Coast shellfish, tropical/ornamental fish, hybrid striped bass, and tilapia farms.
To identify strategies and pathways likely to reduce redundancy and inefficiency in regulatory compliance without compromising oversight to ensure sustainability and social responsibility.
An outcome of this work will be a summary of regulatory costs for each of the aquaculture sectors investigated. When combined with that of the previous and on-going studies, this project will provide critical coverage of the major aquaculture species in the United States (73% of the total value of U.S. aquaculture) in terms of a comprehensive understanding of the economic effects of the regulatory compliance burden on U.S. aquaculture.

The synthesis of the data and results from these major sectors will provide the basis for identifying over-arching effects of the regulatory compliance burden that are common to all sectors of U.S. aquaculture. Perhaps more importantly, it will provide details of the effects on specific sectors, regions, and states that will point to those aspects of regulatory compliance that are most problematic.

The team will be reaching out to farmers to complete a questionnaire to gather information on farm characteristics (farm size, species raised, type of production system, production volume, etc.), permits/licenses required, manpower spent monitoring, record-keeping, and reporting for regulatory compliance, any production delays due to permitting, business losses related to regulations, costs to test water, fish diseases, fees for consultants/attorneys, and production and marketing costs. All farm data will be held in the strictest confidence and only compiled data used to inform their final analysis. The five different surveys are being phased in but all five will be underway by fall/winter of 2019-2020.

If there are any questions about this project or you would like to receive copies of published regulatory cost studies (baitfish/gamefish and trout), please contact the NAA Office at 850-216-2400 or