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Farm-Raised (Aquacultured) Fish & Shellfish Brochure
Guide to Developing Aquaculture in NJ (pdf 6,428k)
Agricultural Management Practices for Aquaculture Facilities (pdf 1,073k)
Aquatic Farmer License Application
Aquatic Farmer License Application (Pre-filled for shellfish culture on leases)
Aquatic Organism Import Permit Application
2006 Aquaculture Directory
Aquaculture Websites

New Jersey Aquaculture

Aquaculture Development

Aquaculture refers to the "farming" of fish, mollusks, crustaceans and aquatic plants. Farming implies some form of intervention in the rearing process -- such as regular stocking, feeding, protection from predators, etc., -- to improve production.

The primary focus of aquaculture in New Jersey is growth of bivalve shellfish, primarily hard clams and oysters. The basic components of shellfish aquaculture include: on-shore hatcheries where larvae are spawned and raised; leased grounds within the NJ coastal zone for grow out; maintenance of the gear and product (shellfish); and harvest once the product reaches market size (anywhere from 2-5 years dependent upon species and growing location). Most farmers in NJ do not have their own hatchery, choosing instead to buy the juvenile shellfish- called "seed"- from the few hatcheries producing hard clams and oysters within the state or from nearby states. NJ cultured shellfish can be found in restaurants locally or in cities such as New York City and Philadelphia with an ever increasing presence throughout the region.

Other aquaculture operations with the state include finfish such as trout, baitfish, and koi as well as aquatic plants.

The NJDA Office of Aquaculture Coordination is promoting the development of the aquaculture within New Jersey by providing the following: permitting guidance and assistance with the permitting process; technical assistance to new growers or those looking into experimental and/or new techniques; and marketing assistance.

  • A Guide to Developing Aquaculture in NJ
    The aquaculture guidebook assists a potential aquaculturist in completing the Aquatic Farmer License Application by explaining the application questions and helping to identify which permits may be required for the proposed operation. Additionally, the guidebook functions to give an overview of aquaculture in New Jersey. Items such as climate, species selection and formulating a business plan, among many other topics are all contained in the document. "

  • Recommended Management Practices for Aquatic Farms: AMPs and Aquatic Organism Health Management Plan
    Agricultural Management Practices (AMPs) and Aquatic Organism Health Management Plan This document serves as guidance to a fish or shellfish farmer, once they have been permitted to conduct their business by all appropriate agencies (i.e. NJDEP, NJDOH). The Agricultural Management Practices (AMPs) are a very general set of guidelines for a farmer. The main benefit of adopting and implementing AMPs is receiving Right to Farm protections from the NJDA. Secondarily, products can also be marketed as being produced under best management practices (BMPs). The Aquatic Organism Health Management Plan is designed to assist farmers in disease prevention and treatment, producing better quality products, and meeting importation requirements of the NJDA.

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