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Financing Opportunity: Selective Breeding Programme for Organic Aquaculture

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Financing Opportunity: Selective Breeding Programme for Organic Aquaculture


Programme: Horizon Europe Framework Programme (HORIZON)

Call: Biodiversity and ecosystem services (HORIZON-CL6-2024-BIODIV-01)

Type of action: HORIZON-RIA HORIZON Research and Innovation Actions

Deadline date: 22 February 2024 17:00:00 Brussels time

Legal entities from Greece, Romania, Türkiye and Ukraine, among other countries, are eligible applicants.

The maximum Horizon Europe funding rate for Research and innovation actions is 100%.

The selected project is expected to contribute to all of the following outcomes:

  • Contribution to a non-toxic environment, to a high level of biodiversity (including genetic diversity) and to high animal welfare standards meeting the species-specific behavioural needs;
  • Significantly boost in the quality of aquaculture products, improving traits of economic and welfare importance;
  • Increased feed efficiency that will also result in a reduced environmental impact through the minimization of feed residues in the natural environment;
  • Less disease outbreaks through genetic progression, i.e. greater disease resistance, increased feed efficiency, faster growth and improved traits of economic and welfare importance;
  • Increased knowledge and acceptance of organic aquaculture and its products in the general public through true stakeholder and consumer involvement.

Proposals should plan breeding programs under organic aquaculture for the main European aquaculture finfish species, i.e. seabass, seabream, trout and salmon. They should breed organic juveniles under organic production conditions respecting high animal welfare standards (as set in regulation 2018/848 and Implementing Regulation 2020/464) and should aim to improve species resilience, diseases resistances and feed efficiency satisfying nutritional needs using as much as possible alternative feed materials to increase production sustainability.

Proposals should work on different species and/or different climatic areas tailored to the specificity of the organic aquaculture production and carefully analyse each solution not only in terms of performance but also in terms of the welfare of the farmed animals. They should work on preserving genetic diversity and adaptive potential by developing selective breeding programmes considering interactions between genotypes and rearing systems.

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