Challenges in the Baltic Sea Region

Excess nutrients in the Baltic Sea has been given the highest priority in the EU's Strategy for the Baltic Sea Region. Severe eutrofication of the Baltic Sea is also a major reason for aquaculture not being able to grow in the region. Aquaculture causes nutrient load. To date, very few measures are available to produce seafood with no negative environmental effects.

There are no easy solutions. Low emission techniques have been developed, but they tend to increase production costs of commodity products to levels not accepted by consumers. Incentives are hardly used and ecosystem approach to reform aquaculture has not been encouraged by the licensing system that is focused on local environmental effects.

Aquaculture in the Baltic Sea region has potential to develop in a sustainable manner. It is a young industry capable of political and technological innovations. European Union has recognized  this by adopting the development of sustainable aquaculture as a flagship project of the Baltic Sea strategy (Project  9.5) The new Common Fisheries Policy by the EU also clearly emphasizes that aquaculture production has to grow to meet the demand wild stocks can not.