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AQUAEXCEL2020 is a research infrastructure project funded under the EU’s Horizon 2020 programme and coordinated by the French National Institute for Agricultural Research (INRA). The project, which  started in October 2015, aimed to further support the sustainable growth of the European aquaculture sector. AQUAEXCEL2020 integrated a large group of leading European aquaculture research facilities and aimed to advance aquaculture research and innovation in Europe. One of its key aspects was to provide subsidised access to top-class aquaculture facilities, as well as numerous highly pertinent services for researchers from academia and industry.

TITLE: AQUAculture infrastructures for EXCELlence in European fish research towards 2020
PROGRAMME: Horizon 2020
INSTRUMENT: Research and Innovation Actions
TOTAL BUDGET: €9,700,000
DURATION: October 2015 - October 2020 (61 months)
COORDINATOR: Institut National de la Recherche Agronomique (INRA), France



22 partners from 12 countries

Aquaculture provides about half of the fish for human consumption worldwide. The demand for fish is rising, but fisheries are not expected to grow due to fully or over-exploited fish stocks. Aquaculture production seeks to meet this increasing demand for fish, but while the aquaculture sector is growing in the rest of the world, it has stagnated in Europe in recent years. Sustainable growth of the aquaculture sector in Europe, based on efficient and environmentally responsible production of high value fish products, can be achieved by ensuring excellent scientific research and by the results being translated into innovation and industrial growth.

AQUAEXCEL2020 will help to achieve this target by integrating 39 top class European aquaculture research facilities that cover all relevant scientific fields, fish species and systems. The project will provide a single access portal to high-quality, harmonised services and resources tailored to the needs of the European aquaculture community. It will also support and conduct world-class research and provide the basis for a European aquaculture innovation system from basic research to applied science.


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