USDA APHIS Veterinary Services
Program Mission: The VS Aquaculture Program serves as the veterinary authority on aquatic animal health issues in the U.S., while promoting the culture of aquatic animals for sale and trade. VS Aquaculture values collaboration, open communication and transparency while serving U.S. aquaculture industry sectors. The Program builds value by engaging U.S. aquaculture stakeholders’ current concerns and anticipating challenges to come.
The APHIS Veterinary Services Aquaculture/Aquatic Animal Health Program provides guidance, support, and standards and partners with commercial aquaculture industries, other Federal agencies, and States to protect and certify the health of farm raised aquatic animals, facilitate their trade as well as to safeguard all the nation’s aquatic animal populations and resources.
Program Vision: To protect and improve the health of U.S. farm raised aquatic animals in order to produce safe wholesome seafood, healthy recreational and display/ornamental animals, as well as protect the nation’s aquatic animal natural resources.
The broad goals of the Aquaculture/Aquatic Animal Health Program are to 1) protect and promote the health of U.S. farm raised aquatic animals (including but not limited to finfish, mollusks, and crustaceans, both freshwater and saltwater), and 2) support U.S. aquaculture to facilitate and leverage domestic and international trade.
Operational Goals to support broader goals in the next three fiscal years:
- Collaborate with our partners to advance the promise of the original National Aquatic Animal Health Plan (NAAHP)
- Implement Commercial Aquaculture Health Program Standards (CAHPS) with engagement of VS personnel on all levels from Staff to Field
- Implement components of Comprehensive and Integrated Surveillance (CIS) for commercial aquaculture to affirm US’ commitment to providing its producers with the best science in monitoring animal health
- Prepare for and respond to nationally significant endemic disease, Foreign Animal Disease (FAD), and emerging disease in aquaculture.
- Support the productivity and viability of the aquaculture industry sectors through visible outreach and ready services.