Integrating Innovative Approaches for Competitive and Sustainable Performance across the Mediterranean Aquaculture Value Chain

Welcome to the PerformFISH website, hosting the results of a novel project that opened the doors to a new era of consumer-driven development in Mediterranean aquaculture.

The €7 million EU funded PerformFISH project officially launched in Volvos, Greece, on 15-16 May 2017 with the aim of exploring and tackling the underlying causes behind the stagnation of the Mediterranean Marine Fish Farming (MMFF) sector. After five-and-a-half years the project officially concluded in October 2023. On this website you’ll find the publicly available results of our research and the ways in which it’s already begun to impact the sector. Below we’ve provided a brief guide to the project.


The Background

Sea bream and sea bass are by volume the third (36.4%) and fourth (28.15%) most farmed fish species in the EU, and their collective value (€1.04 million) surpasses that of salmon (€0.78 million), trout (€0.55 million) or mussel farming (€0.49 million). The farming of sea bass and sea bream contributes significantly to wealth and job creation in Mediterranean rural and coastal areas. However, in recent years, there has been growing concern regarding the lack of growth and improvement in the MMFF sector, and the European aquaculture industry as a whole.

PerformFISH sought to ensure sustainable growth of the Mediterranean aquaculture industry, based on consumer perceptions and real market requirements. Its research was aimed at supporting fish farms to operate in desirable economic and environmental conditions as well as in a socially and culturally responsible manner. Click here for a full description of the PerformFISH objectives.

With 28 partners across the aquaculture value chain, PerformFISH was formed with a strong multi-stakeholder partnership, including significant collaboration and support from five Fish Farming Associations representing 93% of EU sea bream and sea bass production. Click here for a full list of the project consortium.

A general overview is provided in the PerformFISH introductory video:


Project Themes

The PerformFISH research was carried out across seven technical work packages and three management/support work packages. This research structure allowed the project to tackle key issues across the entire value chain, from selective breeding through marketing and sector policy. At our Work Packages page you’ll find details on the specific research objectives of each of these work packages and contact details for the work package leaders.

In order to better categorise the outputs of all this research, we have created dedicated thematic pages in which you’ll find summary videos, factsheets, deliverables and other material relevant to the theme. We hope this helps you find information of particular interest to you and encourage you to reach out to the Theme or Work Package Leader.

The Themes and their associated results pages are:


The Legacy of PerformFISH

Although the PerformFISH-funded research has concluded, the project’s outputs will continue to influence the sector’s industry, policy and consumer perception through new tools and processes, private and regulatory policy suggestions and follow-on research projects. The impact of the project is summarised by the Project Coordinator Katerina Moutou, University of Thessaly, in the following video:

If you would like to browse the detailed findings and outputs of the project as well as summaries of the communication activities and event participation, all our publicly available deliverables are available here, while a full list of our publications can be found here.

Much of the training we delivered during the project has been recorded and can be viewed on the PerformFISH YouTube channel. A description of our training activities and links to available recordings or material is available on our Training page.

If you are interested in learning more about how the Mediterranean Marine Fish Farming sector supports sustainable and ethical practices, or even would like to know more about buying and preparing Mediterranean Sea Bass and Sea Bream, please visit our consumer corner.

If you are involved in the Mediterranean Marine Fish Farming industry, you can visit our industry corner to find information on tools and processes of relevance to you and links to relevant publications or contacts for further information.

Page updated: January 16, 2023