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Curing EU aquaculture by co-creating health and welfare innovations

Project description

Engaging stakeholders to improve aquatic animal health

Farmed seafood is a significant source of protein for food with a low-emissions footprint. However, the efficient and cost-effective control of pathogens represents a critical challenge for the sector where there are diverse species and production systems. The EU-funded Cure4Aqua project will improve aquatic animal health and welfare and support environmentally friendly, inclusive, safe and healthy seafood production. Cure4Aqua will engage key stakeholders in developing cost-effective vaccines to prevent disease caused by five pathogens of economic significance to EU aquaculture. Cure4Aqua will identify markers with a diagnostic capacity to integrate into selective breeding programmes and develop innovative, bio-based alternatives to antibiotics solutions for controlling fish pathogens.


Farmed seafood is an important source of protein for food and feeds with a low-carbon footprint which has an important role to play in helping to build a sustainable food system. A strategic and long-term approach for the sustainable growth of a resilient EU aquaculture is, therefore, more relevant today than ever. However, the efficient and cost-effective control of pathogens remains among the main challenges for the sector, particularly relevant for Europe, where there is a great variety of species and production systems, which hinders the implementation of good husbandry practices tailored to each aquatic species. Through active engagement with key stakeholders, Cure4Aqua aims to jointly improve the resilience of EU aquaculture under environmental, biological, and socio-economic stress, by improving aquatic animal health and welfare and supporting the environmentally friendly, inclusive, safe, and healthy production of seafood. Cure4Aqua will do so by 1) developing cost-effective vaccines to prevent disease caused by 5 pathogens of economic significance to EU aquaculture; 2) Identifying markers with diagnostic capacity to be integrated to selective breeding programs to improve stress and disease management; 3) Developing innovative, bio-based and sustainable solutions as an alternative to antibiotics for controlling fish pathogens at various life stages and alleviate the pressure of global antimicrobial resistance; 4) Developing new tools and technology to improve health and welfare monitoring at the fish farm level and diagnostics of fish pathogens both at the laboratory and the fish farm levels; 5) Placing fish welfare at the foreground of aquaculture production, through the development of high welfare standards that consider different life-stages, production systems, and knowledge of welfare needs, and 6) Ensuring effective external communication, dissemination and exploitation of project activities and results to all relevant target groups.


Net EU contribution
€ 375 062,50
370 05 Ceske Budejovice

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Česko Jihozápad Jihočeský kraj
Activity type
Research Organisations
Total cost
€ 375 062,50

Participants (21)

Partners (9)