Bivalve farming is one of the most important aquaculture sectors in Europe, however, bivalve species are often affected by infectious diseases caused by viruses, bacteria or parasites with high mortality rates. Disease management is difficult since bivalves are filter feeders farmed in open waters.
The European project VIVALDI identified the best management and biosecurity tools and strategies to improve the sustainability and competitiveness of the sector in the Manual for bivalve disease management and biosecurity. The project was led by the French Research Institute for the Exploitation of the Sea (Ifremer), with the participation of the Institute for Agrifood Research and Technology (IRTA) and more than twenty institutions from ten different countries of the European Union.
The book is aimed at producers and managers and researchers in the production chain. It contains a block with recommendations on the communication of outbreaks of detected diseases and what information is key to share between the different actors involved in the value chain.
“It is necessary to have a coherent, fast and transparent system of communication and collaboration between producers and the administration to manage a sector that, for the most part, depends on the transfer of animals between areas,” explained Dolors Furones, IRTA researcher. The manual also contains governance aspects to identify risk areas, manage the transfers and prepare mortality reports.
The manual also includes technical recommendations to eliminate or reduce the presence of pathogens in water or crops, such as water treatment and other crop management techniques and control of environmental parameters that can favor pathogens.
The VIVALDI project is funded by the European Union, through its Horizon 2020 program.
Download the manual below.