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EU Aquaculture Assistance Mechanism

Background information

Type of species farmed (Source: 2023, EUMOFA; 2022, STECF) 

Common carp (Cyprinus carpio), Rainbow trout (Oncorhynchus mykiss), artic char (Salvelinus alpinus) and sturgeon (several species).

Type of production method (Source: 2023, EUMOFA) 

Aquaculture activity in Latvia is limited to freshwater farming. According to Eurostat in 2021, the main production method was in ponds reaching 64% and the rest of production using other methods for which no detail is available .

Sector’s size (production and consumption) (Source: 2023, EUMOFA) 

  • Production (2021): 901,9Tn; 3.164 thousand €
  • Consumption of fishery and aquaculture products (2021): 24,47 Kg per capita. 
  • % Variation in consumption 2021/2020: +7%

Trends (past and future) (Source: MNSPA) 

The production areas and production volumes in basins and recirculation systems (RAS) have increased in recent years. The water recirculation technologies used in the production of the product are environmentally friendly and resource-efficient because the products are grown in a controlled environment. In addition, supporting aquaculture products diversity. 

Impact of aquaculture in the country’s economy, food market and labour market (Sources: EuroFish & MNSPA)

  • Aquaculture is a significant part of the fisheries industry, but is comparatively new and, until recent times, carried out mostly with extensive production methods. Currently, aquaculture is linked only with freshwater sources and there are no farms in the sea coastal areas. There are signs, however, of an interest in marine aquaculture in particular for local shellfish species. 
  • The financial performance of the sector fluctuates, with profitable years climbing with years of decline in production and revenues. These fluctuations are to a large extent influenced by changes in market demand and prices. The main production and income is made up of one species, the carp, which is mainly grown in pond farms. 
  • 5 of the total number of economically active are state farms, whose main activity is valuable fish species reproduction in natural water bodies to compensate for the damage to fish resources. The rest are private farms, including ponds for angling. Over recent years ponds have decreased in number, while their size has increased. 
  • The fish processing industry in Latvia is a well-developed and locally significant sector located basically along the country’s coastline. There are many different types of fisheries products made in Latvia, including frozen, salted, and smoked products, preserves, ready to serve products, and canned fish. 
  • Aquaculture production is sold on the local market, including the vast majority of production – about 80 % – fresh. Sales of aquaculture products outside Latvia have not been developed, the volume of exported production is small. 
  • Aquaculture in Latvia has traditionally been developed as a form of activity of individual enterprises, there is no business initiative to create producer organisations or inter-branch organisations to promote the development of production and market outlets. 
  • Despite the fact that Latvia can be described as a country with good traditions of fish eating, fish consumption in Latvia is not very stable and varies annually. The Latvian market is saturated with numerous fish products including Latvian-made seafood as well as great number of imported fish products. The biggest demand in Latvia is for fresh and frozen fish. Salted, smoked fish products and non-sterilized preserved fish are also requested by local customers. The consumption of fish products, as well as its structure in rural and urban areas of Latvia varies, with urban areas prevailing over rural communities. 

Challenges and opportunities (Sources: EuroFish & MNSPA) 


  • Increasing the output and the level of value addition of farmed fish products. 
  • Further development of competitive, growth-enhancing aquaculture through innovative, cost-effective and environmentally friendly solutions. 
  • Climate change. 
  • Appropriate investments should be encouraged to increase the added value of the products produced and to expand the range of aquaculture products and market outlets. 
  • Encourage initiatives to develop the production of exported species and to expand the range of products offered on the local market.


  • Development of aquaculture activities in marine areas. It should carry out in advance applied pilot studies on the suitability of environmental conditions and species for cultivation off the coast of Latvia using innovative, environmentally friendly and acceptable cultivation technologies for the Baltic Sea ecosystem. 
  • Continue to promote freshwater aquaculture without impact to the environment and sustainable. 
  • Public support provides an opportunity to increase the business resilience of ponds, maintaining a balance between pond farming as an environmental service provider and a producer of competitive production. 
  • Continue to promote development of the competitiveness of aquaculture enterprises and the exportability of products by large investment projects and by co-operation with smaller-scale manufacturing companies. 
  • Increasing innovation and cooperation with science would encourage innovative production of market-driven aquaculture products, improve opportunities to increase the competitiveness of the sector.     
  • Continue to provide public support to cover income foregone or additional costs for enterprises. 
  • Public support to address environmental and climate change challenges should facilitate the adaptation of aquaculture farms to climate change related factors and the development of the necessary innovative solutions. 
  • Research, knowledge and data provision for aquaculture: Continue to ensure a sufficient level of involvement of research institutes in the development of applied research and innovation in the aquaculture sector, organization of seminars involving local and foreign experts, as well as the provision of advice and demonstration on the development of aquaculture entrepreneurship. 

Employment and number of enterprises (Source: 2022, STEFC):

78 economically active aquaculture enterprises employed 330 persons in 2020  

MNSP to develop sustainable aquaculture

Published National Strategic Plan on Aquaculture: National Strategic Plan for Aquaculture in Latvia 2021-2027 (In Latvian)

Summary in English of the "Published National Strategic Plan on Aquaculture": Latvian Aquaculture Development Plan 2021-2027

Relevant Authorities

Applicable Legislation

Cabinet Regulation No. 146 of 14.03.2017 On veterinary requirements for aquaculture animals, products obtained from them and their circulation, as well as for the prevention and control of certain infectious diseases of aquaculture animals. (available: here in Latvian only) 

Applicable Procedures

  • There is no aquaculture licensing procedure. 
  • Recognition from the Food and Veterinary Service (FVS): In order to ensure the monitoring of the production processes of marketable products in accordance with veterinary and food safety requirements. 
  • Register the establishment if live fish are kept in the establishment only before they are directly offered to the consumer. 
  • Aquaculture enterprise registration. 
  • Polluting activities authorized by the State Environmental Service (SES). 
  • A cooperation agreement should be concluded with the FVS and the veterinarian on the monitoring of the aquaculture enterprise. 
  • Farming alien species authorisation. 

National associations and networks

Relevant Websites

Contact Details

Doesn’t have a single contact point: 

Fisheries Department Latvia (Ministry of Agriculture) 

Email address:  


Summary in English of the "Published National Strategic Plan on Aquaculture" for Latvia
(428.75 KB - PDF)