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Requirements for Approval of Aquaculture Establishments

If you operate an aquaculture establishment, you must obtain fish health approval from the Marine Institute.


Key Requirements

  • Biosecurity - put in place good hygiene practices to protect your stock from disease.
  • Participate in a risk-based fish/shellfish health surveillance scheme.  
  • Record all movements of fish/shellfish on and off your site(s) and any mortalities that occur.
  • Record the results of the fish health surveillance scheme. 
  • Notify the Marine Institute if you are moving fish or shellfish for ongrowing -  give three days notice if moving fish/shellfish within Ireland or five days ahead of exporting/importing fish for ongrowing. 
  • Notify the Marine Institute of any unexplained increase in mortalities or if you suspect a listed disease on your site -  email or text 087 1847285

To apply for approval, you should apply on-line and prepare a fish health biosecurity plan, detailing how you intend to comply with the legislation in relation to record keeping, biosecurity measures and disease surveillance.


 Health Biosecurity Plans

Shellfish Health Biosecurity Plan:  Please print, complete and sign this form and scan to attach to your on-line Shellfish Health Approval Application.

Shellfish Health Biosecurity Plan (PDF 896KB)

Finfish/Put & Take Sample Biosecurity Plans:  We have prepared sample plans (download below) which you may use as a guide in preparing a fish health biosecurity plan for your own establishment. Please download the and include site specific details appropriate to your establishment and attach to your on-line Fish Health Approval Application. 

Sample Finfish Health Management Plan (Word 33 KB)

Put & Take Fish Health Management Plan (Word 114 KB)

Note: Approvals granted under the Animal Health Legislation are separate to an aquaculture licence but run concurrently with it. A Fish Health Approval only deals with issues relating to animal health, while licenses will continue to regulate all other aspects of the aquaculture operation.

For more information, please contact the Fish Health Unit on 091 387 200 or email